The association Sea Shepherd and the League for the Protection of Animals (LPA) of Calais are filing a complaint against a fisherman from Dunkirk (North) suspected of hitting a baby seal on Sunday 15 September on the beach of Malo-Les-Bains, reports France Bleu Nord. The animal succumbed to his injuries on Saturday, September 21.
According to witnesses, the fisherman kicked the 3-month-old animal several times in the head, “until he had his mouth bleed”. According to the story made by the Association Sea Shepherd on its Facebook page, the man accused the animal of damaging his fishing nets, saying that he “wanted to kill (…) this filth that eats [his] fish”.
A person on the beach in Malo-Les-Bains intervened and alerted the police. The assailant had already left when police arrived at the scene.
The fisherman was reportedly identified
The seal, a young female recovered by the LPA’s wildlife center in Calais, was finally unable to be rescued and died six days later. A call for testimony has been issued by the gendarmerie to shed light on what happened and an autopsy is to be carried out.
The Sea Shepherd Association and the Calais LPA have filed a complaint, and Sea Shepherd denounces an act of barbarism. The fisherman was reportedly identified by several witnesses, according to Sea Shepherd. If arrested, and he acknowledges the facts for which he is incriminated, he faces two years in prison and a fine of 30,000 euros for cruelty to an animal.