A big game hunter’s dream of creating a hunting museum dedicated to his kills that contained dozens of stuffed animals has ended after it was raided by Madrid police who seized almost 50 stuffed creatures and 132 pieces of ivory.
The National Police, in collaboration with the Municipal Police of Madrid and CITES, responsible for protecting endangered plants and animals, is investigating the former chairman of health insurance giant Sanitas, Marcial Gomez Sequeira.
He was bizarrely caught after inviting journalists from Spanish newspaper El Pais into his home in October 2019 for a report on his plans for the museum. The report revealed that there were 1,250 stuffed animals that he had personally killed over almost 50 years as a big-game hunter.
The National Police said in a statement released on 11th November and obtained by Newsflash that “49 specimens of naturalised animals and 132 pieces of ivory were seized in Madrid.
“The specimens belonged to species such as bears, lynxes, leopards, wolves, crocodiles and primates, and some of them are included on the list of vulnerable species by the International Convention on Protected Species (CITES).”
The police said “49 stuffed animals, four elephant tusks, four hippopotamus tusks, and two rhinoceros horns have been sent to the National Museum of Natural Sciences, and 132 pieces of ivory to a warehouse set up by the CITES Management Authority”.
The National Police shared a video on social media on 11th November showing dozens of animal heads mounted on the walls, including those of deer, zebras, and even an elephant.
Meanwhile, several large tusks are seen on the floor behind a sofa and a large selection of stuffed animals occupies an area near the back of the room where trophies are also displayed.
Several stuffed bears, including a polar bear, are displayed under spears and bows and arrows mounted on the wall above them.
In what appears to be another display room, other displayed dead animals include moose, a wolf, and at least two lions.
A section apparently dedicated to wild cats also features leopards and a cheetah.
One of the farm’s pavilions appears to have a padel court where numerous animal heads are mounted on the walls surrounding it.
The police investigation began in November 2019 when two Madrid cops became aware of the collection of stuffed animals and alerted CITES officials to determine whether any of them were a protected species.
CITES said that a number of the animals appeared to be protected and that the suspect did not have any paperwork for them.
The authorities found the items exhibited in two pavilions on a farm and one man who lived there is currently under investigation.
The items were removed and taken to warehouses managed by the National Museum of Natural Sciences and CITES.
The investigation continues.