Five trees, some more than 100-years-old, have been illegally cut down at Lerderderg State Park.
Parks Victoria and Victoria Police are investigating the act of vandalism at Lerderderg Campground on the Upper Chadwick Track, which happened some time between Sunday and Monday.
The trees were cut with chainsaws and left fallen across campsites, and a steel fire pit was pulled from the ground and taken from the site.
Parks Victoria district manger Tony English said he was stunned at the scale of the “senseless vandalism” which had killed trees that had been growing for more than a century.
“Felling such large trees would have been dangerous, noisy and time-consuming, so we’re asking anyone who might have heard or seen suspicious activity to contact Parks Victoria or Victoria Police,” Mr English said.
“In the meantime, our staff will be hard at work to clear the campsite, ready for visitors to enjoy the state park during the Christmas holidays.”
Penalties for cutting, felling, removing, damaging or destroying vegetation in national and state parks can include initial fines under the National Parks Act 1975, additional fines under the Wildlife Regulations 2013, and court judgements where further penalties may be applied.
Parks Victoria are asking any information about the incident to be reported to 13 1963 or to Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
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