A California man was sentenced to prison on Monday for breaking in and stealing an endangered ring-tailed lemur, the oldest in America, from the Santa Ana Zoo.

Aquinas Kasbar, 19, was given a three-month prison sentence and was ordered to pay $8,486 in restitution to the zoo by United States District Judge Andrew J. Guilford, a court statement said.

Kasbar broke into the zoo on July 27, 2018, after hours and stole the lemur from its cage to keep the animal as his pet. He cut a hole in the captivity that held lemurs and capuchin monkeys using bolt cutters. According to the prosecutors, the hole in the captivity let other animals escape too, causing the zoo damages of $8,486.

All the animals were recovered by the crew later, Fox News reported.

According to court papers, the 33-year old endangered lemur named Isaac was placed in a plastic box with no ventilation holes as Kasbar smuggled it out of the zoo. He abandoned Isaac the next day in front of a Newport Beach Hotel in the same plastic box with two notes attached to it.

“Lemur (with tracker),” the first note said.

“This belongs to the Santa Ana Zoo it was taken last night please bring it to police,” the second one read, according to court documents. 

Isaac returned to the zoo unharmed. The ring-tailed lemurs, native to Madagascar, are in part endangered because of the illegal pet trade. In Madagascar, live lemurs are chained to the wall to attract tourists, though it is against the law. The ring-tailed lemur is on a list of 25 most endangered primates, court documents said. 

Kasbar’s case was investigated by the FBI, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Newport Beach Police Department, and the Santa Ana Police Department.

On July 8, he pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of unlawfully taking an endangered species.

lemur1 A ring-tailed lemur hides between leaves at the Lemurs Park, a private eco-tourism enterprise in Antananarivo, Madagascar. Lemurs, which are found only on Madagascar, are an endangered species due mainly to deforestation and hunting. Photo: Reuters