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Tue, Jan. 28

Owners of Gilbert kennel to be sentenced in 21 dog deaths

PHOENIX (AP) — The owners of a Gilbert kennel where 21 dogs died of heat exhaustion are scheduled to be sentenced Friday for their guilty pleas in the case.

Jesse and Malesia Hughes each agreed to serve 23 days in jail when pleading guilty in June to animal cruelty and facilitation to commit fraudulent schemes.

The case brought by Sheriff Joe Arpaio's office gained notoriety because the couple's then-son-in-law, who is the college-age son of Sen. Jeff Flake, and his wife were taking care of the dogs while the kennel owners were out of town.

The young couple was charged animal cruelty, but prosecutors eventually dismissed the case against them.

Austin Flake alleges in a lawsuit that Arpaio injured his reputation by publicizing trumped-up accusations over the 2014 animal deaths.

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