Koalas: Mass deaths in Victoria bring animal cruelty charges

mas koala

Regulators in Australia have issued hundreds of animal cruelty charges over the deaths of dozens of koalas in the state of Victoria. The animals were found dead at a partially cleared timber plantation at Cape Bridgewater last year. More were later euthanised because of dehydration and injuries sustained during the incident.

A landowner and an earthmoving business are accused of harming and killing the animals by clearing the area. They face 126 charges each. A second firm, a contractor, faces one charge of animal cruelty for disturbing the koala population. They have yet to enter pleas. Victoria state’s Conservation Regulator did not name the accused. Each charge can carry a large fine or a maximum 12-month jail sentence, BBC Sydney correspondent Shaimaa Khalil reports.(BBC)…[+]