Two people were charged with the mass poisoning of animals in the vicinity of Drohiczyn (Podlasie). According to the prosecutor’s office, one of the detained persons is a police officer, while the other is a local government employee, who worked in the municipal office in Drohiczyn during the period covered by the allegations, and currently “holds high positions” in the district office in Siemiatycze. The investigation is ongoing.
Animals that were poisoned on a large scale – not only wild, but also domestic ones – were found in the vicinity of Drohiczyn. The prosecutor’s office initiated proceedings in this case over a year ago. In the course of the investigation it was established that the irregularities were committed by the then employee of the municipal office in Drohiczyn. According to Adam Białas from the District Prosecutor’s Office in Białystok, two proceedings are currently being conducted simultaneously. Two people who have already heard the charges were detained in the case.
– One of the detained persons is a police officer, while the other is a local government employee, who during the period under accusations worked in the municipal office in Drohiczyn, and currently holds high positions in the poviat starosty in Siemiatycze – says Białas.
He adds that the policeman has been suspended from official duties and is forbidden to leave the country. The prosecutor also applied a bail against him.
Four charges against a local government official
The local government official heard four charges. – The first concerns incitement to an offense under the Animal Protection Act, and at the same time against the environment, two allegations concern failure to comply with the obligations related to the disclosure of injured animals protected by species. The fourth allegation, on the other hand, concerns the submission of false testimony and at the same time the frustration of criminal proceedings, and the frustrated criminal proceedings in which – in the opinion of the prosecutor – false testimonies were made, also concerned an animal covered by species protection – explains Białas.
The prosecutor filed a motion for pre-trial detention for the man, but the court refused to do so.
– In its decision, the court shared the prosecutor’s view that the suspect was likely to commit the alleged offenses. On the other hand, he stated that there was no real fear of procedural fraud, explains the prosecutor.
The investigation is ongoing
Białas adds that the investigation has been going on for a long time and is developmental.
– This possible criminal practice, apart from the presented charges, is quite extensive. We are definitely looking for the perpetrators of other crimes, crimes under the Animal Protection Act, crimes against the environment – he explains.
According to the local media, the local government official who heard the accusations was Sylwester Z., who is a member of the Polish People’s Party, and since November last year he has been the deputy starost in Siemiatycze. According to Piotr Czaban, a TVN24 reporter, Z. was a hunter, president of a hunting club operating in Drohiczyn. – Before he became the deputy starost, he was an inspector for nature protection at the commune office in Drohiczyn. Inhabitants who went to the commune office, asking for help in finding the perpetrators who also poisoned the inhabitants’ dogs, turned to Z. – says Czaban. A TVN24 reporter managed to talk to an official who wants to remain anonymous. When asked if he took part in the mass poisoning of animals and if he admitted to the charges against him, he replied that he had not.
TVN24 / radio.bialystok.pl
Main photo source: TVN24