GUARDIA CIVIL officers were taken aback during a visit to a Valencia area home when they were greeted by an African Lynx as they sought to arrest a robber.

Lynx 2

The man was part of a masked crew that stormed a house in April in Muro de Alcoy in Alicante province and stole items and cash totalling €6,500 while the home-owners were inside.

Two of the men were arrested in Massamagrell on May 24, but a third arrest two days later in Pobla de Farnals was not as straight-forward.

Officers were hindered by the presence of an African Lynx that was frightened and ran around the property as they tried to detain their suspect.

Lynx 1

Though called a lynx, the animal is actually a wild cat known as a caracal that is native to Africa and the Middle East.

It can reach up to 19 kilos in weight and is a nocturnal species and tend to be shy which explained its behaviour when the Guardia arrived.

The man they were after was detained and supplied documentation that proved he had the legal right to own the animal.

Officers then handed over the caracal to a relative of the detainee for safe-keeping while they took him away to be formally charged with robbery.

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