DES puts wildlife offenders on notice – your permits will be cancelled

Issued: 25 Nov 2022

The Department of Environment and Science (DES) is sending a strong reminder that unlawful wildlife activity anywhere in Australia will not be tolerated in Queensland and could result in the removal of animals and cancellation of wildlife permits.

DES recently cancelled the Advanced Native Animal licence held by a 24-year-old North Lakes man, Mr Nathan Edward Chetcuti, who was convicted of one count each of take/interfere with protected wildlife, take/interfere with threatened wildlife and access to parks and reserves in the Northern Territory earlier this year.

As a result of this matter, DES reviewed the man’s licence, which he held under the Nature Conservation (Animals) Regulation 2020 and allowed him to keep protected animals in Queensland.

An Advanced Native Animal licence permits the holder to breed and trade in unlimited numbers of most species of native animals.

Following this investigation, DES found that the man was not a fit and proper person to hold an animal authority and issued a cancellation notice, thereby removing the authority allowing him to lawfully keep and trade any protected species in his possession.

As a result of this cancellation, the man will not be able to keep any protected wildlife in Queensland for a minimum of three years.

On Friday, 18 November 2022, DES compliance officers inspected the man’s home and confirmed that there are no protected animals remaining at his property.

DES Wildlife Compliance Program Coordinator Warren Christensen said the outcome of this investigation sends a strong message that DES will not hesitate to take strong action against those who commit wildlife-related offences.

“If people who hold licences, permit or other types of protected animal authorities in QLD are found guilty of wildlife offences in other states, we will take action to ensure they cannot keep protected animals – it’s as simple as that,” Mr Christensen said.

“If you pose a threat to protected species, regardless of where you have committed such an offence, you will be investigated and we will take strong action.

“The outcome of this investigation is just one example of effective cross jurisdictional cooperation and a commitment to protect native wildlife from poaching wherever it occurs within Australia.”

Wildlife crimes are a major driver of the loss of native species and globally the annual value of wildlife crime is estimated at $100-300 billion.

DES has zero tolerance for people who are caught engaging in, or facilitating, the illegal take and trade in wildlife.

Members of the public can report suspected illegal wildlife-related activities to DES by calling 1300 130 372.