Five people charged with stealing lion carcass when dozens of exotic animals were freed

TOLEDO - Five people in Ohio are being accused of trying to steal the carcass of a lion that was among dozens of exotic animals that were set free last month from a private compound in Zanesville.

A prosecutor in eastern Ohio tells The Associated Press that four men and a teenager were charged with misdemeanor counts of theft on Monday.

Sheriff's deputies said that they stopped the group after they loaded the lion's body into the back of a Jeep several hours after the animals had been set free by their owner.

Sheriff's deputies were forced to kill 48 wild animals, including bears, lions and endangered Bengal tigers, after their owner opened their cages on Oct. 18 and then committed suicide.

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