2 Des Moines pilots ask judge dismiss animal harassment charges - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

2 Des Moines pilots ask judge dismiss animal harassment charges

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DES MOINES (KWWL) -

Two Des Moines pilots charged with using planes to disturb thousands of migratory birds are asking a judge to dismiss the charges.

Paul Austin and Craig Martin are due in federal court Tuesday.

Prosecutors say their planes passed about 20 feet above pelicans resting in the water causing the birds to take flight violating the Airborne Hunting Act.

Prosecutors say the law applies even though the pilots weren't hunting because it bans using planes to harass animals.

Defense attorneys say the law is vague and does not apply to this case.

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