Cairo: Saudi environmental police have caught a citizen displaying endangered animals in violation of the kingdom’s environment law.
The man arrested in the capital Riyadh displayed 25 wild animals without a licence including 13 endangered species, Saudi media reported.
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The animals also included three foxes and two porcupines.
The Saudi Special Forces for Environmental Security (SFES) said the offender has been referred to public prosecution as the catch included endangered animals.
Under Saudi law, displaying endangered species is punishable by a maximum fine of SR30 million and jailing of up to 10 years, or one of the two penalties.
Meanwhile, displaying non-endangered wild animals without a licence is punishable by a maximum fine of SR5,000 per animal, SFES said.
In recent months, Saudi Arabia has ramped up a crackdown on ecological violations amid environment preservation efforts in the country.
In August, the environment police said they had caught 39 violators of the country’s environment law by setting off bonfires at a provincial park. The offenders were 37 Saudis and two expatriates – a Pakistani and a Yemeni.
Their violations were detected at a vegetation cover area in the mountainous Soudah park in the Asir region in south-western Saudi Arabia.
SFES said igniting bonfires in protected areas is an offence punishable by a maximum fine of SR20,000 and in vegetation cover lands by fines of up to SR3,000.
Illegal burning of a tree in Saudi Arabia is, meanwhile, punishable by fines of up to SR40,000.
The practice of setting off fires for cooking in public areas is not uncommon during outings in the kingdom.