Siberian tiger killer convicted in Russia
MOSCOW, February 26 (RAPSI) - A hunter who killed a Siberian tiger in the Russian Primorye Territory has been sentenced to community service and fined over 720,000 rubles ($20,280), the Prosecutor General’s Office reported Wednesday.
The crime was committed last May in the forest not far from the village of Dalny Kut. The hunter tracked down and shot a female Siberian tiger. He then skinned it and hid the body near the river.
“The court sentenced the defendant to 18 months of community service. Including an earlier conviction in a theft case, the combined sentence is 29 months in a high security prison,” the statement reads. The court also found for the prosecutions on an environmental damage claim and imposed a fine of over 720,000 rubles.
In June 2013, the State Duma introduced criminal liability with up to seven years imprisonment for the hunting and trading of endangered species.
According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), poachers kill up to 200 polar bears in the Russian Arctic annually. Ecologists from Russia’s Primorsky Region added that there has been a significant increase in the smuggling of tiger pelts in the past 12 months, noting that Siberian tigers are on the verge of extinction.