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Operator of Portland Animal Rescue Business Charged for Role in Wire Fraud Conspiracy, Illegally Dispensing Animal Drugs

NewsOfOregonPost_DOJ

PORTLAND, Ore.—The operator of a Portland area animal rescue, rehabilitation, boarding, and adoption company is facing federal charges for her role in a conspiracy to defraud customers and for illegally dispensing animal drugs.

Tori Lynn Head, 26, has been charged by criminal information with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and dispensing animal drugs without proper labeling.

According to the information, in November 2019, Head and others started Woofin Palooza, an animal rescue business with facilities in Multnomah and Columbia County, Oregon. Head and others are alleged to have obtained pets with medical and behavioral issues from out-of-state and made them available for adoption to paying customers. Between December 2019 and January 2021, on more than 280 occasions, Head and others made material misrepresentations about the health and behavior of the animal offered for adoption. Based on these misrepresentations, customers paid Woofin Palooza more than $82,000 in adoption fees. During this same time period, Head sold customers mislabeled animal drugs in violation of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

Head made his first appearance in federal court today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jolie A. Russo. He was released pending further court proceedings.

U.S. Attorney Scott Erik Asphaug of the District of Oregon made the announcement.

This case was investigated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) with assistance from the Portland Police Bureau. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ethan Knight is prosecuting the case.

A criminal information is only an accusation of a crime, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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