Wildlife Trafficker Sentenced to 15 Months in Federal Prison Following Lacey Act Guilty Plea

Houston resident Savannah Nicole Valdez was sentenced in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas to 15 months in federal prison. In 2023, Valdez pleaded guilty to violating the Lacey Act by trafficking Endangered Species Act-protected birds and primates. The investigation was carried out by Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of the Inspector General. A Mexican spider monkey and two keel-billed toucans Valdez trafficked were sent to zoos in Texas.