Dubai Police task force sets out to tackle dangerous animals trade

New unit responding after a string of complaints and an attempt to sell a wolf illegally

Two Mexican wolves named Valentia and Diego walk inside a cage at a Wolf Conservation Center on December 6, 2020 in South Salem, New York. - They thrive at teamwork, fight for their homes, and cherish their families above all else. It's sometimes said there is no animal on Earth more similar to humans in their social behavior than wolves. But the iconic species -- long a symbol of the free spirit of the American wilderness -- could soon be imperilled because of the Trump administration's decision to rescind protections that brought them back from the brink of extinction. (Photo by Kena Betancur / AFP)
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A new police task force in Dubai has been set up to tackle the ownership of wild and dangerous animals.

Dubai Police are responding after a string of complaints and several breaches of the law in just a few weeks.

These include an attempt to sell a wolf illegally, which was foiled by police.

Police are calling on the public to report people who own dangerous animals so they can be handed over to the authorities.

“The joint work team has responded to many cases ... during the past weeks after receiving several complaints from the public," police said.

The force said its Environmental Crimes Division and Dubai Police's Criminal Investigation Unit were working with Dubai Municipality to enforce Federal Law No. 22 of 2016.

This prohibits people from owning, possessing, trading or breeding dangerous animals.

Animals covered under the law include big cats, snakes, ostriches, scorpions, primates, lizards, seagulls, spiders and some breeds of dogs.

Outlawed dog breeds include Presa Canarios, pit bulls, boxers, Rottweilers, Tosa, Dobermans and Mastiffs.

Those who break the rules face jail terms up to six months and/or fines up to Dh500,000 ($136,000).

Meanwhile, the unit's foiling of man's attempt to sell a wolf has underlined the importance of its work.

It was established late last year and is increasing its operations. Dubai Municipality is to arrange shelter for the wolf.

UAE takes action against animal traffickers - in pictures