Walter Palmer doesn't rule out returning to Zimbabwe, killing more lions

Evan Bartlett@ev_bartlett
Monday 07 September 2015 11:20

Despite becoming seemingly the most hated man in the world for a short time this summer, dentist-turned-lion-killer Walter Palmer hasn't ruled out returning to Zimbabwe for future hunts.

In his first interview since being identified as the killer of Cecil, a celebrated lion in the Hwange National Park, Palmer reinforced a previous statement which said he thought the hunt was legal and added that he had no idea the animal was so famous.

If I had known this lion had a name and was important to the country or a study obviously I wouldn't have taken it. Nobody in our hunting party knew before or after the name of this lion.

Asked if he would go back to Zimbabwe to hunt lions again, Palmer told the Associated Press:

I don't know about the future.

The dentist, who will return to work at his practice in Minneapolis this week, estimated he had been to the country four times before and said, "Zimbabwe has been a wonderful country for me to hunt in, and I have always followed the laws."

Palmer also disputed accounts which said he had paid $50,000 to wildlife rangers for the trophy hunt as well as the reported 40 hours that it took him shooting Cecil with a bow and arrow and the lion finally being put out of its misery.

More: Arnold Schwarzenegger has a message for the dentist who killed Cecil the lion