THE main suspect in a case of animal cruelty in Paphos involving a fox has protested his innocence, according to police.
On Wednesday night, an as yet unidentified man appears to have dragged a fox behind his car, tied with a rope, and then displayed the dead and bloodied body, on his car bonnet.
The car was then parked in an area of Paphos old town which is currently undergoing a multi-million euro facelift ahead of the cultural capital title for 2017.
It is not clear if the fox was dead or alive when it was dragged behind the car.
Acting Paphos police spokesman Michalis Ioannou told the Cyprus Mail that a suspect had made a statement to police that he was not responsible for killing the animal or placing it on the bonnet of his car.
“He didn’t admit any involvement and said that someone else had done it. He said that he left the car on the street and someone else must have put it there.”
Police said that they are checking CCTV cameras in the area and gathering evidence, including further statements.
Anger is growing in the town with residents calling for the perpetrator to be arrested, charged and punished.
One elderly resident said: “This is giving Paphos and Cypriots a bad name. Many of us love animals and I’m disgusted by the way that some of my compatriots treat animals. It has to stop. Whoever did this should be named and severely punished.”
The case has also garnered condemnation from around the world as social media posts about the incident have gone viral.
If you have any information which could assist police in their enquiries in this case, please contact Paphos police on 26 806 060. Alternatively, you may give information anonymously on the citizen’s line: 1460.