Iranian Farmer Jailed for Electrocuting 18 Wild Boars

A criminal court in Rasht, capital of the northern province of Gilan, has sentenced a farmer to three years’ imprisonment for killing 18 wild boars by using a portable power generator and live electric wires, according to Asghar Khodkar, the head of the local Environmental Department. The farmer, who lives in the village of Pirbazar, claimed that he electrocuted the animals to protect his agriculture land and paddy field.

“There is no official data on the wild boar population. However, our studies indicate that their numbers are not dwindling,” Mr. Khodkar said. “Many wild boars are killed by farmers, landowners, hunters, and also in road accidents. Although our office issues hunting permits for wild boars, no one has applied for one yet.”

Many wild boar hunters from Spain travel to Rasht in autumn every year which has concerned wildlife conservationists. However, officials at the Rasht Environmental Department argue that hunting controls the wild boar population which has increased in recent years causing problems for farmers in the region. The hunters reportedly only kill male and old wild boars.

According to the current Trapping and Hunting Law, it is illegal to kill wild boars with tusks shorter than 15 centimeters. It currently costs foreign nationals $1,000 and $1,500 to obtain hunting permits to kill a single wild boar with tooth measuring up to 20 and over 20 centimeters, respectively. 

There have been many reports recently about the mistreatment, abuse, torture and even murder of animals, mostly dogs and cats, in various parts of the country. Three people allegedly tortured and hanged a dog in Rasht earlier this month. Contractors working for the city of Ahvaz, capital of the southwestern province of Khuzestan, reportedly rounded up many street dogs and set them alight in a trash dump site in early November.

Translated from Persian by Fardine Hamidi