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The Animal Legal Defense Fund, the country’s transcendent legal advocacy association for animals— headquartered in Cotati, California, is putting forth a $5,000 cash reward for info prompting the capture and conviction of the individual or individuals in charge of unlawfully isolating a couple of bear offspring from their mom close to Highway 96 in Siskiyou County.

On the morning of Saturday, March 9, 2018, California Fish and Wildlife officers reacted to reports of a disconnected pair of bear cubs— believed to be exactly a month old, and each weighing under 4.5 pounds — found nearby Highway 96 close Yerka.

The two offspring, who have been named Blaze and Yerka were exchanged to a wildlife rehabilitation facility, where they will be held about until they can come back to their wild homes. Ensuing investigation has driven Fish and Wildlife agents to believe the bear baby cubs had been unlawfully isolated from their mom.

Under California law, any individual sentenced for chasing, getting, catching or murdering a bear who is under one year old or who weighs under fifty pounds is blameworthy of a wrongdoing and can be detained for as long as one year in district prison and additionally fined up to $40,000 if the wrongdoing was submitted for benefit or individual increase.

“Wild animals have the right to be only that — wild and free,” says Animal Legal Defense Legal Executive Director Stephen Wells.

“Blaze and Yerka are too young to survive on their own, and so whoever separated them from their mother essentially sentenced them to a slow death from exposure. We are grateful that law enforcement was able to reach the bear cubs in time and support their efforts to identify those responsible.”

The Animal Legal Defense Fund urges any individual who has any kind of info about this case to approach and help secure justice for Blaze and Yerka.

If you have information related to this criminal activity, it would be ideal if you contact  CalTIP, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (CDFW) confidential secret witness program, at (888) 334-2258 or by texting “CALTIP”, followed by a space and the message, to 847411 (tip411).

Callers may remain anonymous. CDFW may offer prizes for data prompting the effective catch and indictment of perpetrators.