The State Prosecutor has filed charges against a police officer in Höfn, southeast Iceland, for having abused his position to obtain a backstrap from a reindeer. The man maintained his innocence when the case opened at the East Iceland District Court on Tuesday.
Icelandic reindeer. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
The officer is accused of having violated work codes. The charge says that on December 12, 2010, he made sure that while he was off duty he was given the task of terminating a reindeer which was entangled in a fence by Reydará at Lón, Fréttabladid reports.
The police officer is suspected of having done this under the pretext of carrying out police duties but with the purpose of obtaining a piece of the meat for his own use.
The charge says that the man used a police vehicle, a firearm and other police equipment, as well as police facilities, to go to the scene, kill the animal and move the carcass to a location away from the public eye to cut out the backstrap and take it to his home.
According to Fréttabladid’s sources, the officer has been on sick leave ever since the case surfaced.
Hunting reindeer is only permitted at a certain time of year and each hunting license is expensive and sought after. Otherwise, the wild reindeer which roam the eastern highlands are to be left in peace.
Click here to read about a recent case of reindeer getting entangled in fencing.