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Feds Want Challenge To Giant Snake Ban Dismissed

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Python captured in Palmetto Bay on Nov. 26, 2012. (Source: CBS4)

Python captured in Palmetto Bay on Nov. 26, 2012. (Source: CBS4)

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MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) – Attorneys for two federal agencies have asked a federal judge to dismiss a challenge to a nationwide ban on four kinds of giant snakes.

The ban on Burmese pythons, yellow anacondas and northern and southern African rock pythons was announced in 2012. The U.S. Association of Reptile Keepers filed a suit to challenge the ban.

Attorneys for Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service say the reptile keepers association has not sufficiently explained why importing the snakes into the U.S. or transporting them across state lines was vital to research and conservation activities among its members.

The lawsuit filed in December in federal court in Washington, D.C., says the ban has cost reptile breeders, handlers, hobbyists and vendors tens of millions of dollars. An attorney for the North Carolina-based association says the defendants remain confident about their claims.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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