Investigative hearings have started against Artemio Sanchez- the alleged mastermind of catnappings in Caloocan and Quezon City. This was the result of the criminal case filed by PAWS against Sanchez last December 20, 2010.

Roberto Rasalan, Johnny Yee, Archie Garcia and Arturo Tarlac who were caught with sacks of 50 live cats in Barangay Talipapa, Quezon City on December 14, 2010 earlier identified Sanchez in a GMA 7 TV news interview as the one who instructed them to catch cats.

The cats were reportedly to be sold to medical schools for experiments at P30 a piece. PAWS’ investigation revealed that Sanchez has long been known in the area as “taga-katay ng pusa” (cat slaughterer) and that his family sells cat carcasses to medical schools for a living.

While police and barangay officials filed criminal charges against the four arrested ‘catnappers’, PAWS was the lone agency that filed a criminal case against Sanchez.

PAWS’ Legal Counsel, Atty Roy Kayaban, recently filed an urgent motion for additional hearing dates and for the issuance of subpoenas to Rasalan, Yee, Garcia and Tarlac so that they can appear before Assistant QC Prosecutor Edgar Navales to affirm their respective affidavits identifying Sanchez as the principal.

Artemio Sanchez’s brother holds a permit from the Bureau of Animal Industry Animal Welfare Division as an authorized supplier of cat carcasses to medical schools. 

At a meeting of the Committee on Animal Welfare two years ago, the Philippine Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) reported the Sanchez business to the Bureau of Animal Industry–Animal Welfare Division (BAI-AWD) after the PSPCA gave verified reports that the said firm drowns the cats to kill them.

BAI-AWD still had no updates nor reports on their course of action on the cat drownings  when the catnappers were arrested by police in December 2010.

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