Doctoral student arrested for ‘animal cruelty’ after pouring salt on snails
Published: Aug 18, 2021 06:28 PM
Snail Photo:IC

Snail Photo:IC

A 26-year-old doctoral student at Hong Kong Polytechnic University has been arrested on suspicion of being cruel to animals after he killed three snails by covering them with salt.

Police received reports of a man sprinkling salt on wild snails at a local fountain on August 4. According to South China Morning Post (SCMP), he ignored passersby who asked him to stop, telling them that snails are a hazard to the ecosystem and he was "eliminating" them. 

The snails in the grass later died of dehydration, leaving only their shells. The man's act was filmed by residents and posted online. 

Officers from police's animal crime team in Yau Tsim district arrested the computer science doctoral student on Monday, said SCMP.  

Animal cruelty is a severe crime that cannot be tolerated in Hong kong, police said. The man is facing a fine of up to 166,000 yuan ($25,600) and three years in prison if found guilty of animal cruelty according to the Prevention Act to Animal Cruelty.