The two young men who brutally tortured a possum on Christmas day by running back and forth over its lower body were today sentenced to one years’ probation.

Callum Gibson Mckenzie from Greenslopes and Hunter Lawrence Jonasen from Tarragindi were charged with animal cruelty which carries a maximum penalty of three years imprisonment. Magistrate Coates says she took into account their age, (they were 17 at the time), the fact that they were vilified on social media and that they have shown remorse by building possum boxes.

RSPCA Qld CEO Mark Townend said he was outraged.

“I feel that the Magistrate is out of tune with other members of the judiciary who are now taking animal cruelty seriously. They will be going home to sleep in their comfortable beds, no fine, no community service. They’ve basically walked away without any consequences for their actions.”

“The possum crawled away to die a lingering death while the perpetrators laughed and posted their heroic deed on social media. Forget about being vilified! They were the ones who put it out there in the first place!. And as for building possum boxes! I wonder who dreamt up that idea.”