Troubled singer Chris Brown might be facing new legal problems after owning a pet monkey without a permit.
Brown could be hit with criminal charges for illegally owning the exotic animal, which has since been taken away from him following an investigation by the California Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, TMZ reported.
The “Say Goodbye” singer, 28, introduced the capuchin monkey, which he named Fiji, early last month in an Instagram video showing the animal with his 3-year-old daughter, Royalty. The video sparked criticism at the time from some viewers who believed the animal shouldn’t be domesticated and was dangerous for a young child to be around.
Some people complained to authorities about Brown owning the pet, which prompted the investigation, according to TMZ. Brown reportedly complied when officials came to his house to search for the animal, which remains in good health.
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The Los Angeles City Attorney is now handling the situation. If Brown is charged with owning a restricted species without the proper documentation, he could face up to six months behind bars, according to TMZ.
The singer’s attorney downplayed the severity of Brown’s actions.
“As I leave my office in Downtown L.A. and walk past people sleeping on the street on my way to defend people charged by the City Attorney with selling medical marijuana … now spending taxpayer money on investigating monkey business, this completes the circle on his absurdity,” Mark Geragos told TMZ.
Brown has been the subject of numerous legal troubles over the years, including being convicted of assaulting Rihanna, his girlfriend at the time, in 2009. He also plead guilty to misdemeanor assault after being involved in an altercation with another man near the White House in Washington D.C. in 2013.