Days after a whale died in the River Thames, a dead whale was put up for sale on Internet auction site eBay. Currently, the selling price is five hundred thousand pounds, with an extensive bid history.
The seller, "London_Boy875", says in his 'product description' that the whale is fresh, having died only recently. He added that the whale died humanely - that is, no chainsaws or Spice Girls songs. The picture he provided is the same as one used in an obituary that appeared in London Today, yesterday.
Robert Smith, an eBay official, said "Although the seller is located in London and is selling a dead whale, we cannot immediately say that it is the recent Thames casualty." Mr Smith is investigating, however, London_Boy875's acquisition of the whale. London_Boy875 does say he got it totally legally.
It follows a report that the dead whale was stolen by an unknown man - could this be London_Boy875? The seller's real identity remains anonymous, but he insists the whale is not that of Thames fame. Buyers on eBay are not demanding answers any time soon, but Scotland_Yarders999, seems particularly interested in the selling of this whale.
The English Whale Society, or EWS, have condemed eBay for allowing London_Boy875 to sell a whale on the auction site. A spokesperson for EWS had this to say: "It is a travesty that seller is selling any whale, but a whale so loved by the nation? It is horrific and terrible - the likes of which the EWS never wishes to see again. The EWS is campaigning for eBay to halt this auction. It is strictly illegal, and against paragraph three of the the Seventh Whale Act of 1995, which states clearly, that no whale is elligible for sale unless permission from owners."
The EWS is organising a protest against the auction scheduled for three days from now, outside the main eBay servers and is considering buying the whale themselves so it can be disposed of humanely. However, the EWS say that "The money is in excess of our limits, and even if we could raise five hundred thousand pounds, we simply could not afford the post and packing cost."