Horse Remains Found in Rural Miami-Dade

Police investigating possible horse slaughter in Miami-Dade

By Brian Hamacher, Christina Hernandez and Lisa Orkin Emmanuel
|  Tuesday, Feb 21, 2012  |  Updated 6:34 AM EDT
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Police are investigating after the partial remains of a slaughtered horse were found in a rural area of Miami-Dade Monday.  Richard Couto, an investigator for the Animal Recovery Mission, spoke about how hard it is to find the perpetrators.

Police are investigating after the partial remains of a slaughtered horse were found in a rural area of Miami-Dade Monday. Richard Couto, an investigator for the Animal Recovery Mission, spoke about how hard it is to find the perpetrators.

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Police are investigating after the partial remains of a slaughtered horse were found in a rural area of Miami-Dade Monday.

The remains were found in a wooded area near Northwest 182nd Street and 129th Avenue by a Miami-Dade officer doing a routine patrol, police said.

"For an animal lover, it's not a pleasant thing to see a horse in 30 pieces, which is what we're finding on this pony right now," said Richard Couto, an investigator for the Animal Recovery Mission.

Couto said there is demand in the state to eat horse meat.

Part of Couto's job is catching the perpetrators, but he says, it never get easy because they usually don't leave any evidence behind, and they dump the mutilated horses in rural areas during the night hours.

Meanwhile, the bodies of several horses, believed to have been slaughtered for their meat, have been discovered throughout South Florida in the past few years, in an area activists say is one of the top illegal horse slaughter spots in the world.

In December, the remains of a slaughtered horse were found in a canal at Southwest 136th Street and 205th Avenue. Much of the meat had been taken and all that was left behind was the head, skin and intestines.

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