Unclaimed cow’s legal status in limbo after road accident in Turkey’s Erzurum
After the Aug. 18, 2016 accident, the driver filed a legal complaint against the owner of the cow, which was only four months old at the time. However, the cow was unclaimed and the target of the legal action is still unknown.
Law enforcement officials believe the cow was not claimed because no one wanted to receive a penalty.
The Erzurum Chief Prosecutor’s Office opened an investigation into the case and ruled that the cow would be treated in a shelter by state veterinarians until the case is resolved.
The female cow has therefore been under state protection for the past 18 months and not allowed to leave. Until its owner comes forward the cow is bound to remain under state supervision.
“This is certainly an interesting legal problem. We are seeing a case in which a cow’s rights are considered just like a driver’s rights,” said Merve Kars, a lawyer registered at the Erzurum bar, on Feb. 10.
However, because the cow is considered “property” and not an individual legal person under Turkish law, it will likely end up as property of the Treasury, Kars added.