A 43-year-old Mandarin-speaking man was charged with destroying protected wildlife after a video of him allegedly killing a kangaroo went viral on social media, according to Australian and Chinese media.
A graphic video that surfaced on Chinese social media platforms such as instant messaging service QQ and Sina Weibo showed the man approaching an injured kangaroo with a knife.
He then slashes at its throat 19 times, Chinese news site KNews reported. The incident occurred in Melbourne in recent weeks and first went viral on Tuesday (Aug 29) night, Chinese news site ifeng.com reported on Thursday.
The man is heard speaking to the kangaroo in Mandarin, while the injured creature snarls in defence. A man filming the video can be heard laughing.
Eastern Grey kangaroos are protected in Australia and it is illegal to hunt them, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported on Thursday (Aug 31).
The man was arrested on Wednesday night and charged with one count of destroying protected wildlife.
He lives in Ringwood, a suburb in Melbourne, and firearms and knives were seized from his home.
If convicted of destroying protected wildlife, the suspect can be jailed up to 24 months and fined up to AUD$38,000 (S$40,800).
Chinese media reported that the man was from China's Shenyang city, in its north-east Liaoning province.
Chinese netizens reacted angrily to the viral video, condemning the man's cruel actions.
One commenter on ifeng.com asked for him to be "heavily punished", while another commenter said that with smartphones, "anything can be posted nowadays".