First successes of the fight to eliminate bird crime and poaching

Positive trends may show in the procedure to stop bird crime and poaching: arraignment on nature damaging charges, final judgement in animal cruelty and arraignment on charges of animal cruelty. Conservation organizations and hunting associations welcome this development, as more than hundred cases remained unrevealed to which more than thousand birds fell victim.

Recently, the police has carried out successful investigation in three different cases:

  1. The Szabadszállási Police Department of the Kunszentmiklósi Police Headquarters proposed an indictment on the charge of damaging nature against a local hunter, who admittedly used poisoned eggs to persecute unwanted animals and killed three of the protected Marsh Harrier, as well. He may be punished 5 years in prison by Section 242. of the Criminal Code.
     
  2. The prosecutor’s office of Tiszafüred District sentenced a 31-year old person to six month’s suspended imprisonment for shooting a Long-eared Owl, with accelerated procedure. Perpetrators of this crime can face up to 2 year’s imprisonment by Section 244. of the Criminal Code.
     
  3. The prosecutor’s office of Szerencs town prosecuted a local man on counts of theft and animal cruelty. During the act of poaching, the suspect caused the death of a strictly protected Imperial Eagle. Being, an autonomous crime, it carries 3 year’s imprisonment by the Criminal Code.


Raven flying with two immature Eastern Imperial Eagles (Photo: Zoltán Orbán).

 

Stricter investigation and prosecution are mandatory to decrease bird crime at a country level. The National Bureau of Investigation, as a co-partner of MME in Helicon Life project funded by the E.U., hopefully helps to reveal further cases in the future.

 

Márton Horváth

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