169 animal abuse, trafficking charges laid after dozens of reptiles found

A man has been charged with 169 animal abuse and trafficking offences after dozens of reptiles were found in a home in Sydney’s west.

It follows a lengthy investigation into reports of illegal exportation of protected Australian animals for money.

Strike Force Raptor began investigations in March, before making the discovery at a home in Lethbridge Park yesterday.


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Amongst the discovery, investigators found 12 Shingleback lizards, one Stimson’s python, three young Monitors, a South American Mata Mata turtle, and two deceased crocodiles.

The reptiles were seized by authorised wildlife handlers.

It will also be alleged that another 147 reptiles – including a Death Adder, 58 Gecko lizards, blue-tongue lizards and 21 bearded dragon lizards – were seized by the NSW Office of the Environment and Heritage under a search warrant carried out in 2017.

A 25-year-old man was arrested taken to Riverstone Police Station, where he was charged with 165 counts of deal in or attempt to deal in protected animal, two counts of attempted export regulated native specimen without permit or exemption, possess non-native/regulated specimen, and commit act of cruelty upon an animal.

He was granted strict conditional bail and is due to appear at Mt Druitt Local Court next month.

Investigations are continuing.

If you have information for Police, please contact NSW Police on 131 444 or provide information using their online form 24 hours per day. 

You can report also information about crime anonymously to Crime Stoppers by calling 1800 333 000 or via nsw.crimestoppers.com.au 24 hours per day. Crime Stoppers is a registered charity and community volunteer organisation.

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