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Authorities seize sloths, other non-native exotic animals in downtown Olympia

Sloths and other exotic animals were confiscated in downtown Olympia on Saturday.

Police said an anonymous tip led them to an address on Capitol Way North, which had South American tree sloths, an Asian monitor lizard and other reptiles and insects. A tree sloth can sell for $5,000 to $7,000.

The location used to be home to Don's Camera.

None of the species can be owned or sold in Washington without federal and state permits.

The business owners are licensed as a sloth rescue in Oregon, but could not produce any paperwork showing the animals could be owned in Washington.

"Research from the group's website based out of Oregon shows that they do meet-and-greets with them, and sometimes sleepovers. We were kind of concerned that they'd been breeding them as well as one of them did have a baby and one was pregnant," Courtney Mclees of Thurston County Animal Services said.

The animals have been taken to a private sanctuary for now.

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