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Cyprus

Over 700 poaching fines issued in past five years

A bird stuck on a limestick

The interior minister said on Friday that 718 out-of-court fines have been issued for poaching over the past five years, the amount due totalling about €2.3m.

The police anti-poaching unit reported 74 violations between July 2017 and November 2019, at which point the game and fauna service picked up the baton.

Since then, the unit reported 293 incidents, the police reported 13 cases, and the two departments jointly uncovered a further 11 violations.

The data were made available by the game and fauna service, which provided the details to Interior Minister Nicos Nouris who had been asked on the issue by Diko MP Christos Orphanides.

It is not immediately clear, however, how many of the out-of-court fines have been paid. For context, it was reported earlier this week that two out of three covid fines have not been paid.

“All poaching incidents are reported to the local police units where the investigating officer, upon researching the case, proceeds with recording the case and issuing the subsequent and relevant fine,” Nouris said.

Earlier this year, the game and fauna service warned of steep fines for those caught illegally hunting out of season – emphasising that during this time most violations are punishable with a fine of up to €8,000.

Four hunters were fined more than €10,000 in total for illegal hunting at the start of last year’s season, with a 21-year-old ordered to pay €5,300 for killing 15 woodpigeons without a hunting licence in a prohibited area.

 

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