A wealthy American dentist is under fire for illegally poaching Africa's beloved lion named Cecil.
Walter James Palmer, of Minnesota, is a well-known big game hunter who travels the world to satisfy his bloodlust for big game.
Palmer is known to spend tens of thousands of dollars for special permits that allows him to kill tigers, elk, rhinos, and rare Desert Bighorn Sheep for their heads to hang on his wall.
13-year-old Cecil was the most famous resident of one of Zimbabwe's National Parks. Hunting with bows and arrows is allowed in the park -- but only during the day and only with a permit.
Palmer is accused of paying a tour guide $55,000 to lure Cecil out of the National park at night on July 1.
The men tied a dead animal to a vehicle and lured Cecil a distance away from the park. Palmer allegedly shot the animal with a complex bow and arrow. The men returned the next morning (after Cecil had bled to death), then beheaded and skinned him, according to the Guardian UK newspaper.
“They went hunting at night with a spotlight and they spotted Cecil,” Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force spokesman Johnny Rodrigues told the Guardian UK newspaper. “They tied a dead animal to their vehicle to lure Cecil out of the park and they scented an area about half a kilometre from the park.”
Two men were arrested for helping Palmer poach Cecil.
Palmer's attorney defending his actions, saying Palmer had a permit to hunt. But park officials say the permit does not allow hunting at night. Palmer is also accused of removing a protective collar from around Cecil's neck. Hunters are not allowed to kill animals with collars on.
“What he’ll tell you is that he had the proper legal permits and he had hired several professional guides, so he’s not denying that he may be the person who shot this lion. He is a big-game hunter; he hunts the world over.”
Palmer, a typical narcissist, left comments under an article, taunting other commenters who issued death threats against him.
Palmer's lucrative River Bluff Dental practice in Minnesota is under siege by animal lovers who call the office non-stop. Hundreds of outraged animal lovers left negative comments on Yelp.