JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The killing of more than 50 lions on a South African farm last week has led to increased scrutiny of the country’s policy allowing the annual export of 800 skeletons of captive-bred lions to meet demand in Asia for bones.

Reinet Meyer, senior inspector for the SPCA in Bloemfontein, says the animal protection group is preparing to file a formal complaint alleging abuse by the farm’s owner and foreman.

Meyer says she saw two lions that had been kept in transport crates for several days, which she described as “totally unacceptable.”

She says a total of 54 lions were killed at the farm over two days.

The killing of captive-bred lions is not illegal in South Africa if permits are in order. Conservationists say enforcement is weak.

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