Crime & Justice

Sentencing set for Calif. songbird smuggler

A California man could face up to 20 years in federal prison for trying to smuggle songbirds from Vietnam into the United States by strapping them to his legs.

Forty-six-year-old Sony Dong of Garden Grove is scheduled to be sentenced Monday in Los Angeles.

He pleaded guilty last year to illegally importing wildlife after authorities at Los Angeles International Airport discovered 14 live birds wrapped in cloth and strapped to his legs and ankles after a flight from Vietnam.

Authorities say the birds could have sold for up to $400 each. The birds included magpie robins and red-whiskered bul-buls.

Investigators later found 51 songbirds at the home of another Garden Grove man. He pleaded guilty to conspiracy and faces up to five years in prison.

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