Taipei, Sixteen chicken carcasses that were recently dumped beside a creek in Chiayi County were confirmed to be carriers of the highly pathogenic H5N2 influenza virus, the Livestock Disease Control Center of Chiayi County said Friday.
The presence of the H5N2 virus in the 16 chickens dumped by the creek in Jhongpu Township was confirmed in a report issued by the Council of Agriculture's Animal Health Research Institute, the center said.
According to the Waste Disposal Act, any unlawful disposal of dead livestock can be subject to a fine of between NT$6,000 (US$195) and NT$3 million, the center said.
More serious cases may be handed over to local prosecutors and violators could face a maximum of five years in jail combined with a fine of up to NT$15 million, the center said.
Meanwhile, the county's Jhongpu Precinct has been asked to investigate the matter and to search for those responsible for dumping the carcasses.
Based on the Statute for Prevention and Control of Infectious Animal Disease, the culprit could also face a fine of up to NT$1 million for dumping carcasses confirmed to have the virus, and a maximum of three years in jail and a fine of up to NT$1 million if the incident were to lead to the spread or transmission of the virus.