New York man pleads guilty to capturing, killing hawks - WFSB 3 Connecticut

New York man pleads guilty to capturing, killing hawks

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STAMFORD, CT (AP) -

A New York man has pleaded guilty to capturing and killing federally protected hawks in Stamford.

Connecticut U.S. Attorney Deirdre Daly says 63-year-old Thomas Kapusta pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Hartford to charges including four counts of taking, capturing and killing red-tailed hawks or Cooper's hawks.

Prosecutors say Kapusta and another individual are pigeon-racing enthusiasts who killed the hawks because they saw the predatory birds as a threat to their pigeons. Kapusta, of Westbury in Long Island, New York, systematically captured the hawks in a trap designed to capture birds of prey and then shot and killed them in the trap.

Red-tailed hawks and Cooper's hawks are protected under federal law.

Kapusta is scheduled to be sentenced May 13. He faces a maximum of 30 months in prison.

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