A smiling, wealthy trophy hunter from Augusta, Georgia, has captured the ire of thousands and thousands of angry people across the world after a photo of him posing with the body of a rare snow leopard went viral online. The hunter is identified as Hossein ‘Soudy’ Golabchi, who is originally from Iran, photographed with the body of the dead animal wrapped around his neck and shoulders. Golabchi is believed to have killed the animal in central Asia before 2008.
Golbachi owns Golmar Construction and Development Co. of Augusta, Georgia and started hunting in Iran at the age of 16. The leopard appears to have been shot numerous times in the back end as blood seeps down its coat.
According to the Daily Mail, more than 119,000 people have signed a petition to bring the hunter to justice. The Care2 petition launched by Amanda W. of TERA International (Tiger Exotic Animal Ranger Awareness), the organization which focuses on the preservation of exotic animals, was initiated on Snow Leopard Day 2017, and it is hoped by Leopard Day 2018, Golabchi is brought to justice. The petition begins:
‘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.”
In 2008, Golabchi wrote the book “Obsessed!” where he described in detail his obsession for decades to kill a snow leopard. Amanda hopes to make “an example” of the hunter who goes after these rare cats likely to become extinct. Studies reveal only 3,500 to 7,000 snow leopards remain in the wild as their population steadily decreases. About 700 are currently in zoos around the world reports Defenders of Wildlife.
The most recent update of the situation is as follows:
“Thanks to the UK press for coverage. By his own admission Golabchi brought the Snow Leopard’s remains to Germany and claims to have shipped it to Mexico. We now ask Fish and Game to confirm where the pelt is. Big Cat killing apologists are now using every excuse to justify this. The date of the hunt is inconsequential at this point-it never should have happened in the first place and must come under international scrutiny. An indepth statement will be issued here by TERA on 11/7/2017 8:00pm GMT”
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