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Oversight of exotic animals seen as weak

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Posted: Sunday, April 16, 2006 10:00 pm

When Abe Karajerjian applied for a permit to turn his backyard into a retirement home for seven former show-business orangutans, the neighbors howled in protest.

Residents of this desert community worried about a repeat of last year's horrifying chimpanzee attack, in which a man nearly died. "I feel that my children … will be put at extreme risk if these animals escape," neighbor Grant Torkelson wrote in a letter to Kern County officials, pleading with them to deny the application.

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