THE Guardia Civil have liberated 80 illegally caught finches destined for sale in North Africa and made one arrest in interventions in Mojacar and at Almeria port.
The Guardia launched a surveillance operation in La Parata in Mojacar on the back of information that someone was regularly capturing wild birds in the area. Discreet observations finally resulted in the spying of an individual hidden among thickets and cane alongside a small stream where they had set up a net, ropes and sticks to manually trap the finches.
The Guardia identified the individual as Vera resident P.L.C.S., and reported he has been charged with an offence against wild fauna and flora.
The officers also seized 12 captured birds, along with materials used to snare the creatures and two goldfinches used to attract other finches.
In the second intervention at the provincial capital port, officers carrying out regular controls on passengers and vehicles preparing to board North Africa-bound ferries caught out a driver with 65 illegally hunted finches hidden in two cages among blankets and other items in the back of his van.
According to the Guardia, the fact the birds had been concealed showed it was “evident the driver was attempting to avoid declaring the corresponding export of wild birds, the final destination of which was their sale on the illegal market.”
All 80 birds have been returned to their natural habitat.