NewsLocalSBA police makes seven trapping arrests in a week

SBA police makes seven trapping arrests in a week

The Sovereign Base Area Police’s efforts to combat bird trapping have continued at pace after making seven arrests in one week in September.

The police’s dedicated Community Action Team has been out on the ground in the Eastern SBAs working alongside Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) officers and on September 14, they swooped on an open field in the Pyla area, making one arrest and seizing mist nets, bird imitating devices and discovering 22 dead wild birds.

Two other men attempting to avoid arrest fled the scene but were later picked up by officers and charged with illegal bird trapping.

Superintendent Panicos Panayi, said: “This operation resulted in the arrest of three individuals and the seizure of bird trapping equipment and it once again highlights the importance of the CAT team and its working relationship with other organisations like CABS.”

He also went on to reveal that on September 21, four other individuals – all from Xylophagou – were arrested for bird trapping.

During the operation, officers on the ground seized mist nets and discovered 27 wild birds, one bird-imitating device with a loudspeaker, a USB stick, four iron poles and a car battery.

Superintendent Panayi continued: “This was another successful operation by our team. We kept the orchard under observation and when the time was right, we moved in to make the arrests and seizures.”

Despite the SBA Police reducing bird trapping levels by more than 90 per cent in its areas in recent years, the superintendent was quick to point out that there would still be no let up in the force’s efforts to eradicate the problem. By working alongside other dedicated organisations like BirdLife Cyprus, CABS and the RSPB, he said trappers would be caught and prosecuted.

“We operate a zero-tolerance policy on bird trapping in our areas and that will not change,” he said.

“We will continue to use every piece of technology available to us and by working alongside other organisations, we will catch and prosecute the perpetrators of this crime to the full extent of the law.”

The men arrested will appear before the SBA Court in Dhekelia in the coming weeks to answer their charges.

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