Australia: Death threats to Port dolphins

29th Oct 2002 Story:

Death threats had been made against the Port River dolphins, Environment Minister John Hill said yesterday.

They were aimed at scuttling the State Government's plans for a dolphin sanctuary in the river, Mr Hill said.

"A lunatic fringe wants to stop the Government from creating a safe haven for our dolphins," he told State Parliament yesterday.

Mr Hill said Premier Mike Rann had received a letter "from what appears to be a disturbed individual who said in part: `move all the dolphins out of the river. I personally volunteer for this distasteful, but necessary task – and I have some friends that would be more than happy to lend a hand'."

Mr Hill said staff in his department had also received "unsettling" telephone calls.

The callers had warned that "people would go after the dolphins" with powerhead explosives.