GARDAÍ ARE INVESTIGATING a robbery at Michael Flatley’s Cork home last night, during which the raiders targeted just one item – a rhino horn worth between €200,000 and €300,000 on the black market.
According to reports, the gang gained access to the Castlehyde property at about 7pm and made off with the horn which was on display in a ‘safari room’.
The family were unaware of the burglary at the time and did not see the thieves. It is understood that the horn was cut off a stuffed rhino head that was mounted on the wall of the room.
The details of the robbery have angered people this morning – but not because of the actions of the gang.
People have taken to social media to question why the dancer had the rhino horn in his possession. Rhinoceros are a protected species but the illegal trade is rampant across the globe.
The Animal Rights Action Network has sent a “stiff letter” to the Lord of the Dance star this morning, stating displeasure at what it describes as his “selfish” behaviour.
The group’s founder, John Carmody, writes:
“Whilst I am sure the break-in was traumatic and stressful on you and your family’s part, has it set in or even occurred to you that neither you nor those who stole the horn are the rightful owners?
That horn once belonged to a sentient living animal who’s very species is in serious trouble right now due to poaching and hunting. The animals are literally on the brink of being wiped off the face of the planet. In order to obtain a rhino horn, the animal must first be shot dead, which can often be more than one bullet before the animal has much of its faced hacked off in order to get to the root of the horn that you so casually had on display at your home. Have you thought for even a moment how much violence and crime was behind the origin of that “ornament”?
The organisation wants Flatley to donate the item for a public burning if it is returned to him.
ARAN were not the only ones unhappy with the revelations this morning, with a number of people showing their outrage on Twitter.