From the "Westfield Leader" 27-March-97
"A hearing regarding the embattled Scotch Plains Zoo, which had been scheduled for last Thursday in Superior Court in Elizabeth, was adjourned until Thursday, April 10, in order to give a court-appointed attorney and an independent veterinarian additional time to prepare reports regarding conditions at the 6.5-acre facility.
Zoo owner Harold Kafka, meanwhile, pleaded guilty Monday in Scotch Plains Municipal Court to charges related to the housing of some of the animals at his establishment, which is located three miles south of Route No. 22 on Raritan Road. The zoo is home to approximately 150 animals, including a number of exotic or endangered species.
The penalties imposed on Mr. Kafka are expected to be either reduced or dismissed, however, if he meets conditions which were previously agreed upon between him and the New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife by Monday, April 14, according to Municipal Court Clerk Yvonne Rude. The division opted not to renew Mr. Kafka’s operating permits in January, citing multiple violations concerning public safety and animal welfare......
The division issued summonses to Mr. Kafka following a March 12 inspection by a conservation officer and a zoologist, who found the zoo’s orangutan house unheated due to a lack of oil and the lights turned off, according to division spokeswoman Sharon Southard. Heat was restored to the unit, which houses several primates, as well as alligators, after an anonymous benefactor offered to have the oil tanks replenished.
Mr. Kafka also was issued a summons for failure to repair cages which house wolves at the zoo, and another for failure to properly house an otter at the facility, the Court Clerk said."