Donald Trump Jr, an avid trophy hunter who has been accused of killing an endangered animal under controversial circumstances, will speak at the world’s largest trophy hunting convention in Nevada next week, according to reports.
The first son and top campaign surrogate to Donald Trump was set to attend the Safari Club International’s annual three-day convention in Reno, Nevada, where he was scheduled to speak on 8 February.
In addition to the speech, Mr Trump Jr also planned to sell a trophy hunting trip with him in Alaska.
For $17,000 (£13,067), attendees of the convention can bid to hunt black-tailed deer native to the region with him, according to Safari Club International.
Other features of the event include an estimated 870 exhibits selling everything from animal heads to hides, as well as 300 hunting trip opportunities across the country, with bids ranging between $1,650 (£1,268) and $100,000 (£76,860).
The Humane Society of the United States slammed the upcoming convention in a statement that said: “This annual event is the largest meeting in the world of people who celebrate the senseless killing, buying and selling of dead animals for bragging rights.”
“As our planet suffers an extinction crisis, it is business as usual for the trophy hunting industry and SCI, who continue to revel in spending millions of dollars every year to destroy imperilled wildlife.”
News of Mr Trump Jr attending the event comes after it was reported late last year that he received special treatment during a trip to Mongolia, where he allegedly shot and killed an endangered argali, the largest sheep in the world.
Mr Trump Jr retroactively received a rare permit allowing him to kill the animal during his hunting trip to the country in August 2019, according to ProPublica. That permit was reportedly issued in September, after he had already left the country.
The event also follows attempts by Mr Trump’s White House to roll back protections for endangered wildlife worldwide, including providing the first trophy import permit for a lion trophy from Tanzania.
The move to issue a permit for the Tanzanian lion was decried as “tragic news for lion conservation” in a statement by the Centre for Biological Diversity.
“Tanzania is a lion stronghold, but it’s been criticised by scientists for corruption and inadequate wildlife protections,” Tanya Sanerib, international legal director at the centre, reportedly said in a statement at the time, adding: “Opening the US market to these imports doesn’t bode well for the lion kings of Tanzania.”