May 18, 2013

Germany billing Biebs for pet's care

From news service reports

BERLIN - Justin Bieber will face a bill for thousands of euros for his pet monkey's two-month stay at an animal shelter after it was seized by German customs, officials said Friday as a deadline expired for him to reclaim the animal.

click image to enlarge

Mally is a capuchin monkey.

Photos by The Associated Press

click image to enlarge

Justin Bieber

A spokesman for Munich's customs office said the teen singer had until midnight Friday to contact them, otherwise capuchin monkey Mally will be transferred to a permanent home at a zoo or animal park in Germany.

"If no further documents arrive then the seizure order comes into effect and the animal becomes the property of the German state," customs spokesman Thomas Meister told The Associated Press. The deadline fell after offices closed for a three-day holiday weekend in Germany, and it won't be clear before Tuesday whether the documents arrived.

Mally was seized by German customs March 28 when Bieber failed to produce required vaccination and import papers after landing in Munich while on tour.

The now 20-week-old animal was quarantined and cared for at Munich's animal shelter, where manager Karl Heinz Joachim said Mally had fared well and gained weight.

The shelter has criticized Bieber for keeping such a young monkey as a pet, saying it shouldn't have been taken away from its mother until it was a year old. Experts say capuchin monkeys also need to be kept in groups as they are very sociable.

"The best thing would be not to buy one at all, but if you do, buy five," said Joachim.

Meister said the cost of care, food and vet visits amounted to several thousand euros.

Carole King to receive Gershwin prize at White House

WASHINGTON - President Obama is putting on a show at the White House next week for singer-songwriter Carole King.

She's the first woman to receive the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song from the Library of Congress.

The White House said Obama will present the award to King during a concert Wednesday. The program will include performances by King, Gloria Estefan, Billy Joel, James Taylor and Trisha Yearwood.

King's hits during five decades of songwriting include "You've Got a Friend," "So Far Away" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) a Natural Woman."

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