Man Rented Lion Cub To 'Show Off'. Selfies Helped Cops Track Him Down

The lion cub was found "half-starved" and is currently being cared for by an animal rights group.

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Man Rented Lion Cub To 'Show Off'. Selfies Helped Cops Track Him Down

Authorities were tipped off to the big cat's presence after seeing selfies on social media


A tiny lion cub was found in an empty apartment in a gritty Paris suburb after being abandoned by a man who hired the creature to show off, investigators said on Wednesday. Police began hunting for the cub after noticing selfies on social media of the 24-year-old man posing with his tawny pet.

On Tuesday, they caught up with the man at his home east of Paris, but discovered he had left the big cat at another address.

On arriving at an apartment in the northeastern Noisy-le-Sec suburb, the fire service found the abandoned cub "wasting away."

After being captured with a lasso, the startled lion was placed in the care of an animal rights group.

The man was taken into custody on charges of illegally keeping a wild animal.
 
 
 


A series of photographs posted on Facebook by Pompiers de Paris, the Paris fire brigade, shows firefighters and vets carefully placing the fierce-looking cub in a cage.

"It is important to remind everyone that wild animals are neither domestic animals nor toys," they wrote in a caption accompanying the post.

Their rescue efforts were appreciated by netizens. "Thank you for saving the poor little baby," wrote one person. "Poor baby separated from his mum. Thank you for saving him," wrote another.

This is not the first time a big cat has been found abandoned in the French capital's northern suburbs. 

In 2016, a tiger cub was abandoned northeast of Paris, where it was being rented out by drug dealers for a few euros a photo.

(With inputs from AFP)
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