May 1, 2009, VANCOUVER – The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is hoping that a $1,000 reward being offered through their Victims of Cruelty program will help to bring to justice those responsible for killing a Bald Eagle near Iona Island Regional Park on Sea Island, British Columbia (BC). The reward is for information resulting in the conviction of those responsible for killing the bald eagle.
According to Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director, it is crucial that whoever is responsible for killing this animal is caught.
“You have to be concerned about anyone who can have such disrespect for such a magnificent wild creature,” says Hickey. “Worldwide, bald eagles are an endangered species and are considered to be a protected species in BC; killing one is in contradiction of BC’s Wildlife Act.”
“There are some indications that the bald eagle was poached for its talons and beak – as these were removed from the body.
Anyone with information pertaining to the slaughter of this Bald Eagle is asked to contact The Richmond RCMP at 604-278-1212 or The Humane Society of Canada at 1-800-641-KIND (5463).
The HSC Chairman & CEO Michael O’Sullivan says that it is these types of crimes involving animals that were responsible for The Humane Society of Canada creating the Victims of Cruelty program.
The Humane Society of Canada has offered a similar reward for those responsible for killing more than two dozen Bald Eagles in North Vancouver who had been poached for the black market trade in their talons and feathers. In this case those responsible where caught, however one of the dozen people apprehended was only given a fine of $1,450 for pleading guilty. Under BC laws, people can be fined up to $50,000 and get six months in jail for a first offence of poaching. For trafficking in parts, people can receive a fine of up to $100,000 and up to one year in jail.
The Humane Society of Canada will be asking the court to bar any of those found guilty from owning or working with animals, and will also ask the court to force them to surrender all firearms, and ban them from owning firearms Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 and from hunting, for as long as the law will allow. Any vehicles used in the commission of a criminal offence could also be forfeit, and if two people or more planned the eagle killing, they can also be charged with criminal conspiracy.
“Cruelty to animals is a criminal offence,” says O’Sullivan. “Recent changes to the Canadian Criminal Code mean that offenders face maximum penalties of up to 5 years in prison for indictable offences and for summary convictions - fines of up to $10,000 and up to eighteen months in jail. In addition to the criminal record and fines, the person convicted can also be prohibited from owning, having the custody or control of or residing in the same premises as an animal or a bird for any period that the court considers appropriate but, in the case of a second or subsequent offence, for a minimum of five years. Damages may be awarded by the court to the person or organization that had to pay for the care of the animal as a result of the offence.”
Anyone who would like to donate to The Humane Society of Canada’s Victims of Cruelty Reward Program to help solve crimes against animals and nature can contact the organization at 1-800-641-5463 or through their website at www.humanesociety.com
CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at www.humanesociety.com via twitter at www.twitter.com/HSCanada and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Humane-Society-of-Canada/211468055538280[For more than 17 years, Al Hickey was the Chief Executive of the BC SPCA and before that headed up the Alberta and BC Chambers of Commerce, and was the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Vancouver. He has been The HSC Western Regional Director for over 12 years. He has 4 children and 6 grandchildren. For his lifetime of achievement dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment, we have bestowed upon him our prestigious Heroes for Animals Award, shared by only a handful of people and organizations.
A father with two children, and a houseful of dogs and cats, Michael O'Sullivan has worked across Canada and in over 110 countries during the last 40 years helping people, animals and nature.]
The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works to protect dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and small animals, livestock, lab animals, wildlife and the environment. We carry out hands on programs to help animals and nature, mount rescue operations, expose cruelty through hard hitting undercover investigations, work to pass laws to protect animals, use a multidisciplinary approach, support animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres, and spread the word about how to help animals and nature through humane education.
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