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Fine for illegally keeping crocodile - Townsville

Pictured above: Australian Saltwater Crocodile. Photo courtesy ABC


The Department of Environment and Science (DES) welcomes the $3,000 fine handed down today in the Townsville Magistrates Court to a man who pleaded guilty to keeping a crocodile suspected of being illegally taken from the wild.

In late 2020, DES received information that a crocodile had been taken from the wild. On 17 December 2020, during the execution of a search warrant at a property, DES officers uncovered a shallow grave containing a large decaying crocodile carcass.

DES officers also seized the man’s mobile phone. The crocodile carcass appeared to match the size of a crocodile captured in photographs with the man on the property. One photograph showed the man holding the tail of the crocodile, which appeared to have been shot in the head.

The male saltwater crocodile was approximately 3.5 - 4 metres in length and estimated to be between 30 to 40 years old.

The man was charged with one offence of keeping native wildlife reasonably suspected to have been illegally taken, namely an estuarine crocodile, contrary to section 90A of the Nature Conservation Act 1992.

On 4 March 2022, the man pleaded guilty and was fined $3,000 and ordered to pay $1,500 in legal costs. As no conviction was recorded, DES is unable to name the man.

People are reminded that crocodiles in Queensland are a vulnerable species and are protected under the Nature Conservation Act 1992.

It is unlawful to deliberately harm or kill crocodiles or be in possession of a deceased crocodile. Anyone with information about the deliberate harm or killing of crocodiles, or the illegal trade of wildlife and their body parts is urged to call 1300 130 372 or call the Queensland Police Service.


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