The Malta Independent 18 September 2019, Wednesday

Updated (2): Lioness attacks five-year-old boy at Montekristo park, government reacts

Sunday, 3 April 2016, 19:32 Last update: about 4 years ago

A lioness at the Montekristo Park today attacked a five-year-old boy, injuring him.

The park at Hal Farrug was open today for a fair on hunting, which was inaugurated by parliamentary secretary for sports Chris Agius last Friday in the presence of Minister for Home Affairs Carmelo Abela and Opposition spokesman for hunting Charlo Bonnici (photo below).

The boy was taken to Mater Dei hospital by his parents, where he was found to be suffering from back and neck injuries.

The police described them as slight.

Last November, a three-year-old boy was seriously injured by a tiger that was taken out for a “walk” by its handlers in the same park. 

The boy had been in the company of a 56-year-old from Zabbar, who tried to get the animal off the child.

In a statement, the government said that it had been informed today that the illegal zoo at Montekristo had been reopened and that an accident had been reported.

The government said that since its closure, a number of inspections were carried out by the responsible authorities who always reported that the zoo was closed. The last inspections were carried out on Wednesday and Friday.

The government said that it had already taken the zoo owners to court, and the case is still pending.

After what happened today, more legal steps will be taken against the owners, the government said.

It will not tolerate that the owners ignore the law, the government added.

An inquiry will be set up to investigate the case.

In a statement, Caccia Village Malta Limited owner of the brand Caccia Village International Malta disassociated themselves from this incident that occurred outside the premises rented by them to host the Fair Caccia Village International Malta.  It is to be clarified in fact, that the Animal Park has a completely separate entrance from the Fair grounds and there is absolutely no access between the two venues.

Simultaneously, the directors hope, that this incident will not in any way effect the positive experience delivered during the days that the fair was open, including the reputation of the company. 

 

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