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Jax Daily Record Wednesday, Nov. 20, 201910:10 AM EST

State attorney launches new crime against animals program

Special Prosecution director will review all cases.
by: Max Marbut Associate Editor

Reflecting action recently taken by Congress, 4th Judicial Circuit State Attorney Melissa Nelson directed that all cases involving animal-related issues will be reviewed by longtime prosecutor Cyrus Zomorodian.

The U.S. House of Representatives on Oct. 22, and the Senate on Nov. 5, approved the Preventing Animal Cruelty and Torture Act to make severe animal cruelty and torture a federal crime.

The new local policy is more broad.

Zomorodian will assess every case involving alleged violations of Florida Statutes Chapter 828 (Animals: Cruelty; Sales; Animal Enterprise Protection) before any action is taken.

“Cyrus is a wealth of information on animal-related law issues and he will be a great benefit to attorneys in this office,” said Nelson in a news release.

Zomorodian is director of the office’s Special Prosecution and has long specialized in animal law.

His also is chair of the Animal Law Section of the Florida Bar. The section informs Bar members and the public of developments in case law, legislative changes and other relevant animal law issues.

Zomorodian was an adjunct professor at Florida Coastal School of Law teaching animal law courses and often is invited to speak about animal-related issues.

“It has been repeatedly proven that those persons who abuse animals have a heightened likelihood of committing crimes of violence against domestic partners and children. I look forward to working with our law enforcement and animal care professionals in Northeast Florida to fight for justice for those who have no voice,” Zomorodian said in the release.


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