Sûreté du Québec investigating deer slaughter in Nominingue

Provincial police and the Quebec fish and wildlife department have launched separate investigations into the slaughter of 
of as many as 30 deer in the Laurentian community of Nominingue.

Authorities say they were alerted two weeks ago by residents who were finding deer carcasses on their properties which bore the marks of gunshot wounds.

No charges have been laid in the case, but the Sûreté du Québec is also investigating because all the animals had been shot with 22 calibre bullets which are normally used to hunt squirrels or rabbits.

Officals say most of the deer were hit in the lungs or stomach and suffered a lingering death.

The Journal de Montreal says the main suspect is a resident who apparently was upset that the deer were eating the cedar hedge on his property.

The newspaper says the maximum penalty in cases such as this is five years in prison and a fine of up to $1850.