8 Dec 2010

Rewards offered to catch seal killers

8:40 pm on 8 December 2010

An anti-whaling campaign group is offering a reward to find whoever was responsible for killing 23 fur seals near at the Ohau Point seal colony near Kaikoura.

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society says it hopes the $11,500 reward money will prompt someone to come forward.

Police in Kaikoura are at this stage no further ahead in identifying who clubbed the seals to death. They say a public appeal has generated some information, but not enough to lead to an arrest.

Other people angered by the slaughter have been contacting the Department of Conservation to offer reward money to catch those responsible.

The department says about six people have offered between $1000 and $10,000.

DoC South Marlborough area manager Dave Hayes told Checkpoint a reward using such donations will be considered if other rewards do not result in new information.

Mr Hayes remains optimistic whomever killed the seals will be caught, given the colony is right beside State Highway 1 and highly visible.

New Zealand fur seals are protected and it is a criminal offence to harm or kill them.