RSPCA Queensland believes it has located a man filmed throwing a cat into a wall in a video that went viral on social media this week.
The video, captured by a Snapchat user, shows a man hurling a cat over a fence. The animal then hits the wall of a neighbouring house at force, before it disappears out of frame.
The young man and others, not in frame, are heard laughing.
Media outlets passed the video on to the RSPCA after they had the video sent to them.
The RSPCA is yet to finalise their investigation, but spokesman Michael Beatty said they expected to lay charges, possibly of animal cruelty, next week.
Mr Beatty said the video sparked “universal outrage”.
“The good news is that thanks to the media and thanks to the general public we have been able to track down the person we believe responsible for that,” Mr Beatty said.
“The reason that we were able to find him was obviously the fact that it had been posted on social media.
“Unfortunately we’re seeing more and more instances where people are posting quite disturbing acts of animal cruelty on social media.”
In Queensland, animal cruelty charges carry a maximum penalty of three years imprisonment or a $220,000 fine.
Mr Beatty said in response to the growing number of social media videos that show disturbing acts, RSCPA Queensland have a dedicated investigator who tracks animal abusers down.
“We’d like that she didn’t have to do a job like that, but sadly it seems to be a sign of the times,” he said.
“Perhaps they don’t think it through because it’s through social media, but with the public outrage that ensues we are able to track them down.
“We’ve prosecuted a number of people that have been caught on social media abusing animals.”