A video of a man brutally attacking a wounded kangaroo with a knife began circulating on Chinese social media earlier this week.
The man was seen on the video speaking to the kangaroo in Chinese, and slashing at its throat at least 18 times.
“Just face it, that’s your fate, let me finish this as early as I can,” he said.
On Wednesday night, following tip offs from members of the public, officers from the Victorian Department of Environment Land Water and Planning arrested a 43 year old man at a house in Rowville in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs and charged him with one count of destroying protected wildlife.
Eastern Grey kangaroos are protected by law in all Australian states and territories.
DELWP Manager Compliance Operations Glenn Sharp said “The wildlife offences captured in this video are particularly abhorrent.”
“We’d like to thank members of the public who came forward with information about the alleged offences and enabled us to act quickly in response.”
“We work closely with RSPCA, Victoria Police and Crime Stoppers to help combat wildlife crime.”
Evidence including firearms, knives and mobile phones was also seized from the property.
The man was granted bail and will appear at Ringwood Magistrates Court at a date to be determined.
Reaction on the Chinese social media site Weibo to the man’s arrest was quick.
A user called “Miss Kang” wrote “He deserved it. What a shame for Chinese overseas! Killing an animal so cruelly should be punished.”
Another user called Aoandon wrote “He’s brought humiliation to our Chinese Australians. He shouldn’t be in Australia. Go back to China.”
Under the Wildlife Act 1975, the penalties associated with killing, destroying and being in control of unlawfully taken protected wildlife range from $7,928 to $38,056 and/or six to 24 months’ imprisonment.
With Heidi Han.