Five people have been charged with 48 animal cruelty offences in Charters Towers. In November 2016 officers from the Townsville Major and Organised Crime Squad received a complaint about offences committed against an injured wallaby who later died. It is alleged the animal was assaulted by a man while another took video. The animal died as a result of injuries received. On November 30, officers executed search warrants in Townsville addresses, seizing mobile phones, a dash cam GPS unit, firearms and clothing.
Following a protracted investigation, police have charged three men aged 17, 19 and 17 and two juveniles with a total of 48 offences, including 12 counts of animal cruelty, 14 counts of restriction on taking protected animals, two counts of lighting unauthorised fire and one count each of wilful damage, discharge weapon in a public place and carrying a weapon in a public place.
The men are due to appear in the Townsville Magistrates Court on May 18.