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Trump sons' trophy hunt legal, Zimbabwe parks authority says

Zimbabwe's parks authority says proper licenses were obtained by Don Trump Jr. and Eric Trump.
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Eric and Donald Trump Jr. pose with a leopard while on a hunting trip to Zimbabwe. (Screengrab) (Screengrab)

JOHANNESBURG — A hunting trip taken by Donald Trump's sons in Zimbabwe was legal, the country's parks authority has stated in response to outrage over photos of Don Jr. and Eric posing with dead African animals.

Recently emerged photos of the Trump brothers next to an endangered leopard, Cape buffalo, crocodile and other animals were posted on the website for Hunting Legends, the company that ran their 2010 trophy hunting trip to the Matetsi area of Zimbabwe, near Victoria Falls.

Zimbabwe conservationists said last week they were investigating the legality of the hunt.

But Caroline Washaya-Moyo, spokesperson for Zimbabwe's parks authority, said in a statement that proper licenses for the hunt had been obtained, according to Agence France-Presse.

“They were accompanied by a professional hunter, and we have done a background check on him and his license is still valid,” she said. “Also with the Trump brothers was a ranger from the parks department who was monitoring the hunt. The animals they hunted are available for hunting in Zimbabwe."

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Trump trophy hunt photos lead to Zimbabwe investigation

Zimbabwe conservationists are checking the legality of a hunting trip by Trump's sons Don Jr. and Eric.
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Eric and Donald Trump Jr. pose with a leopard while on a hunting trip to Zimbabwe. Conservationists in Zimbabwe say they are investigating the legality of the hunt. (Screengrab) (Screengrab)

JOHANNESBURG — Zimbabwe conservationists are investigating a big game hunting safari taken by Donald Trump's sons after photos showing Don Jr. and Eric posing with their kills surfaced online.

Johnny Rodrigues, head of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, told the Associated Press that investigators are checking the legality of the 2011 hunting trip, arranged by a South African company. This includes looking into whether hunting licenses and trophy fees were paid, and whether the company was allowed to be hunting in Zimbabwe.

Rodrigues is quoting as saying that if organizers and hunters breach Zimbabwe's hunting laws, they can face imprisonment or a fine of up to $500,000.

More from GlobalPost: Photos of Trump family's Africa hunting safari spark outrage

Photos of the Trump brothers posing with an endangered leopard, Cape buffalo, crocodile and other animals were posted on the website for Hunting Legends, the company that ran their hunting trip to the Matetsi area of Zimbabwe, near Victoria Falls.

In one photo, Don Jr. holds a severed elephant tail, while in another, the two brothers pose next to a dead crocodile that has been strung up by its neck in a tree.

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Photos of Trump family's Africa hunting safari spark outrage (VIDEO)

Recently surfaced photos show Donald Trump's sons, Don Jr. and Eric, posing with dead African animals including a leopard, elephant and crocodile, while on a hunting trip to Zimbabwe.
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A screengrab of a 2011 post on the Hunting Legends International website shows Donald Trump Jr. posing with a Cape buffalo while on safari in Zimbabwe. (Screengrab)

JOHANNESBURG — Photos showing Donald Trump's two sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, with a menagerie of dead animals while on a "big five" hunting safari in Zimbabwe have sparked outrage among wildlife conservationists.

The recently surfaced photos show the Trump sons posing with dead African animals including a leopard, elephant, Cape buffalo, crocodile, kudu and waterbuck

In one photo, Don Jr. holds a severed elephant tail, while in another, the two brothers pose next to a dead crocodile that has been strung up by its neck in a tree.

The photos were posted on the website for Hunting Legends, the company that ran their hunting trip to the Matetsi area near Zimbabwe's Victoria Falls.

"This was not the first time the Trump's hunted Africa [sic] and certainly not the last," the company said on its website, adding that "it was evident from the word go that these two amazing young men are everything but the 'city slickers' you would expect!"

More from GlobalPost: Hunters shoot and pay to save the rhino

Peta, the animal rights group, criticized the hunting safari in a statement to Hollywood Life.

"Like all animals, elephants, buffalo, and crocodiles deserve better than to be killed and hacked apart for two young millionaires' photo opportunity," Peta said.

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