Mike Hopcraft, also known as the Reptile Guy, has retained a lawyer and is preparing to defend himself against recent charges. / File Photo

Reptile Guy taking charges seriously, says lawyer

Lawyer writes that procedure in question did not cause python any harm, pain or discomfort

Mike Hopcraft, known as the Reptile Guy, has retained a lawyer and is preparing to defend himself against recent charges of animal cruelty.

Earlier this month, the BC SPCA issued a press release informing the public that Crown counsel had approved two counts of animal cruelty charges and one count of violating the Veterinarians Act against Hopcraft, following a BC SPCA investigation.

According to a media release from Hopcraft’s lawyer, Jason Tarnow, the charges were filed after the BC SPCA viewed “a video posted on Mr. Hopcraft’s Wild Education Facebook page showing him relieving a blood python of a bowel obstruction.”

The release goes on to state “contrary to what the BC SPCA has alleged, this procedure did not cause the python any harm, pain, nor discomfort. In fact, the python was relieved of a six-month build up of excrement in its bowel track, which was surely causing it incredible discomfort.”

Tarnow wrote that the python is alive and well.

The release goes on to say Hopcraft has considerable knowledge and more than 18 years’ experience in handling and caring for exotic animals and has educated the general public on television, in schools, and at community events.

“Over these years, Mr. Hopcraft has consistently demonstrated that his primary objective is to ensure the well-being of his animals, many of which come to him as neglected or abandoned pets.”

Hopcraft previously operated his reptile rescue in Abbotsford, but is now located in Mission.

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