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Photo Of Rich Hunter With Rare Dead Animal Sparks Massive Petition

It doesn’t take all that much to spark outrage online these days. An ill-framed comment, a scandalous story, or an outrageous pic are some of the things that can do the trick.

When you have a situation that combines all three elements, the outrage can swell to a fever pitch. That’s what’s going on in this case, and the target is a wealthy individual that was photographed with the dead carcass of a rare animal.

As the Daily Mail shares, a petition has been started online to bring the man to justice, and it’s attracted over 100,000 signatures thus far.

TERA International is the organization that started the petition. The group, which is devoted to protecting endangered animals, became incensed at an image that was making the rounds featuring a smiling man that had the corpse of a snow leopard dangling across his shoulders.

The man has been identified as Hossein 'Soudy' Golabchi, and it’s believed the incident took place in central Asia sometime prior to 2008.

“There’s nowhere in the entire Western hemisphere (and the rest of the world) that allows anyone to go into Central Asia to 'trophy hunt' a snow leopard. It is illegal to own their body parts or their beautiful fur and importing their remains into the United States is a federal offence,” the petition reads in part. “This long-time and prolific trophy hunter of rare cats must be made an example of or these magnificent cats will vanish forever.”

Golabchi, originally from Iran, resides in Georgia and is the owner of a successful construction and development company.

He’s previously been honored by the Grand Slam Club/Ovis, which touts itself as an organization of hunters and conservationists “dedicated to improving and perpetuating wild sheep and goat populations worldwide, as well as North American big game.”

Back in 2003, he was honored by the group for being an accomplished sheep hunter. The organization would note that Golabchi has a museum and trophy room that includes “well over 400 wild animals of the world, representing over 225 different species,” and that he’s a “tremendous conservationist.’

Snow leopards are considered an endangered species, and they are found in the mountains of central Asia. It’s estimated that there are only between 3,920 and 6,390 of them that exist in their natural habitat.

Traffic, a wildlife trade monitoring network, notes that hundreds of them are killed every year. Roughly half of them are killed by farmers as retaliation for the leopards feeding on their livestock, while another 20 percent are specifically killed for purposes of illegal fur trade.

It’s unclear if the petition efforts will ultimately bear any fruit, as we’re talking about something that happened nearly a decade ago. It’s also unclear how the photo came to light in the first place.

While it’s undoubtedly off-putting - and the practice of trophy hunting in the countries that the leopards live in is illegal - some additional context is needed before Golabchi could be charged with anything. Nevertheless, he’s already been convicted in the public eye.

Source: Daily Mail
Photos: The Petition Site, Everipedia, Pixabay

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