In a move certain to make Grumpy Cat even more surly, Russian tax collectors have started arresting cats and holding them in custody to motivate delinquent taxpayers to make good on their obligations.
Officials of the Federal Bailiff Service (Tomsk Department) “arrested four kittens” as security for a 40,000-ruble debt (about $679 US dollars). In another case, tax collectors in Novosibirsk got someone to pay 12,000 rubles (about $200 US dollars) in back taxes by threatening to seize four of his cats.
“Because the animals are pedigree and expensive, the representative of the law decided to place the cat brood under arrest,” according to a statement from the region’s court marshal’s service.
Cats are not the only animals being taken hostage by Russian officials. A report from Krasnoyarsk reveals bailiffs were trying to collect on a 20,000-ruble (about $340 US dollars) judgment for an unpaid utility bill. Apparently seeing nothing else worth seizing, “they became interested in a British Shorthair cat named Yasmin and a fluffy pet rabbit.” Officials took both, pending payment of the bill.