Russian surgeon earns $ 1 million a year, helping tourists to hunt rare animals

George Ragozin (right) trained as a doctor in Russia, but moved to Africa to become a great animal hunter after earning only 220 pounds a month for his family to live

A Russian surgeon boasted of having built a business of £ 1.2 million per year that offers wealthy tourists the opportunity to hunt elephants, rhinos and lions as trophies.

George Ragozin, nicknamed the "Russian madman" by his clients, offers packages of foreigners looking for trophies that include draft beasts of their choice, along with lodging, food, beer and wine, in addition to a daily washing service.

They start at $ 5,000 USD (£ 3,800) for a ten-day safari that includes hunting for wildebeest and zebras, $ 21,000 (£ 16,000) for a male and female lion, and $ 34,000 (£ 26,000) for a fortnight of & # 39; leopard bait & # 39;

George Ragozin (right) trained as a doctor in Russia, but moved to Africa to become a great animal hunter after earning only 220 pounds a month for his family to live

George Ragozin (right) trained as a doctor in Russia, but moved to Africa to become a great animal hunter after earning only 220 pounds a month for his family to live

Ragozin now earns 1.2 million pounds per year carrying wealthy foreigners for hunting trips, with targets that include critically endangered elephants and rhinoceroses

Ragozin now earns 1.2 million pounds per year carrying wealthy foreigners for hunting trips, with targets that include critically endangered elephants and rhinoceroses

Ragozin now earns 1.2 million pounds per year carrying wealthy foreigners for hunting trips, with targets that include critically endangered elephants and rhinoceroses

He is now well known among trophy hunters in his adopted home in South Africa, where he is known as King George and "the Russian madman".

Organized vacations offered by Ragozin include £ 3,800 for a ten-day safari, wildebeest and zebra, and £ 26,000 for a fortnight of "leopard bait".

Organized vacations offered by Ragozin include £ 3,800 for a ten-day safari, wildebeest and zebra, and £ 26,000 for a fortnight of "leopard bait".

Organized vacations offered by Ragozin include £ 3,800 for a ten-day safari, wildebeest and zebra, and £ 26,000 for a fortnight of "leopard bait".

The most expensive packages are $ 55,000 (£ 42,150) for five days hunting white rhinoceros or elephant shooting for 12 days.

It even offers a seven-day trip to stalk and kill a black rhinoceros, a critically endangered species, for $ 550,000 (£ 421,000)

The costs do not include chartering planes, firearms and ammunition, nor sending trophies and tips to your staff.

He says his trips are complete until 2020, while his website shows dozens of images of previous clients with their murders.

A video shows Ragozin on safari while a wildcat cat is shot from a tree, and a blue wildebeest is slaughtered.

The former Moscow medical student, now the father of three daughters, entered the hunting business after refusing a doctor's monthly salary of $ 300 (£ 230).

He insists that his expeditions in South Africa, where he has his headquarters, along with safaris in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Burkina Faso and Namibia, are all legal and licensed.

It reached the spotlight in Russia in the last days after a critic stated that he was trying to encourage children to hunt.

The images found online show him with two of his daughters, Ksenia, now 20, and Dana, 19, when they were girls who had more recent deaths.

Ksenia seems to have had 13 years in the photo with a blue wildebeest while Dana was a little younger with a gemsbok and a common boar.

The critic Maxim Tikhonov wrote: "I discovered George Ragozin who … invented a creative idea to teach children to hunt after eight years. $ 5 per bullet. & # 39;

Ragozin replied: "Hey you, listen …" followed by a barrage of jargon from the Russian jail, ending: "I'll go for you, just wait."

A South African source reported: "Elephant populations have fallen by 30 percent in the last 10 years, so why is hunting still allowed? […]

Ragozin has been pushed into the media in Russia amid claims that he is encouraging children to hunt after images of him and his young daughters appeared with deaths.

Ragozin has been pushed into the media in Russia amid claims that he is encouraging children to hunt after images of him and his young daughters appeared with deaths.

Ragozin has been pushed into the media in Russia amid claims that he is encouraging children to hunt after images of him and his young daughters appeared with deaths.

He has refuted all claims that he provides his vacation packages to children, and insists that sport is really good for conservation

He has refuted all claims that he provides his vacation packages to children, and insists that sport is really good for conservation

He has refuted all claims that he provides his vacation packages to children, and insists that sport is really good for conservation

Ragozin claims to have used the profits from his hunting business to buy ranches that cover 15,000 hectares of land and build a zoo of 120 animals near his home.

Ragozin claims to have used the profits from his hunting business to buy ranches that cover 15,000 hectares of land and build a zoo of 120 animals near his home.

Ragozin claims to have used the profits from his hunting business to buy ranches that cover 15,000 hectares of land and build a zoo of 120 animals near his home.

According to Ragozin, his hunting packages cost up to £ 530,000, although it is not clear what is offered in the most expensive package.

According to Ragozin, his hunting packages cost up to £ 530,000, although it is not clear what is offered in the most expensive package.

According to Ragozin, his hunting packages cost up to £ 530,000, although it is not clear what is offered in the most expensive package.

"A hundred years ago, the African elephant population was 10 million, that number is now 400,000 miserable.

Ragozin has loyal supporters not only among Russians but also among Americans, Germans, Spaniards, Slovaks and Slovenes, he said.

In a video, Ragozin is called the "incarnation" of Russian hunting pride in Africa.

He is "a beloved legend, respected and admired throughout the world of trophies". Foreigners jokingly call it crazy Russian, "says the video.

"He is a very objective person in what he does, he is very determined and persistent in achieving ambitious trophy hunting goals."

A previous image shows him with Vladimir Putin's close ally, Dmitry Rogozin, currently head of the Russian Space Agency and former deputy prime minister.

He established his hunting business 15 years ago and now has a turnover of $ 1.5 million (£ 1.15 million).

"I was born and raised in Moscow," he said.

"After school, I continued my family tradition and entered the surgery department at the Sechenov Medical Institute of the Moscow State of Perviy.

"I really wanted to become a doctor, but receiving a salary of $ 300 was so humiliating.

"I got married during my student years and there was no way I could feed my family with that income. & # 39;

He said "you have to follow local rules" to operate in Africa and he boasts that he now has his own hunting farms that cover up to 15,000 hectares.

"The fashion of hunting" changes from year to year, "he said.

"Some time ago, antelope hunting was very popular, now this type of hunting … has no demand. & # 39;

Ragozin says that the "fashion" of hunting changes every year, and currently favors large and dangerous animals such as lions

Ragozin says that the "fashion" of hunting changes every year, and currently favors large and dangerous animals such as lions

Ragozin says that the "fashion" of hunting changes every year, and currently favors large and dangerous animals such as lions

While gazelle hunting was popular a few years ago, Ragozin says there is now little demand

While gazelle hunting was popular a few years ago, Ragozin says there is now little demand

While gazelle hunting was popular a few years ago, Ragozin says there is now little demand

Despite being criticized for killing innocent animals, Ragozin says that hunting has done more for conservation in Africa than any other system

Despite being criticized for killing innocent animals, Ragozin says that hunting has done more for conservation in Africa than any other system

Despite being criticized for killing innocent animals, Ragozin says that hunting has done more for conservation in Africa than any other system

Ragozin is headquartered in South Africa, but leads hunts throughout the continent, including in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Burkina Faso and Namibia.

Ragozin is headquartered in South Africa, but leads hunts throughout the continent, including in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Burkina Faso and Namibia.

Ragozin is headquartered in South Africa, but leads hunts throughout the continent, including in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Burkina Faso and Namibia.

The "main interest" now are the "dangerous" animals and the "very expensive packages that range from $ 50,000 (£ 38,500) to $ 700,000 (£ 537,000) for each safari."

It is not clear what this VIP safari would involve.

He started a zoo of 120 animals near his house and the hunting ground in the Limpopo province in South Africa, larger than the Moscow zoo.

It admits that it is a loss, but the hunting of claims leads to the conservation of animals, and criticizes environmental groups for not helping animals in the way they claim.

"Not a single ecological or green organization offered a hand in the management of this zoo," he said.

"I consider all these organizations with a bit of skepticism, in my opinion, they work much more for the public than for nature.

"I think hunting in conservation and that hunters take much better care of nature than any other person.

"An example: when South Africa legalized trophy hunting, the number of animals grew eight times, taking care of animals is a priority in any hunting business.

"The link is obvious: the more animals, the better business, which is why hunters around the world are the best donors."

Ragozin has a professional hunter's license for dangerous games, and is a member of the Association of Professional Hunters of South Africa, Safari Club International (SCI) and the International Association of Professional Hunters (IPHA).

He was supported today by trophy hunter Sergey Yastrzhembsky, 64, a former spokesman for Putin and his predecessor Boris Yeltsin.

"South Africa is one of the brightest and most convincing examples of how well-organized trophy hunting can become a highly profitable business," he said.

"It creates workplaces, income that taxes the budget, improves the living standards of local communities, provides a market with high quality meat and helps develop tourism."

"Forty years ago there were half a million animals, from jackals to elephants, in South Africa, when the country changed to the modern model of trophy hunting.

"There are now a total of 20 million animals in South Africa alone.

About 10,000 foreigners who go hunting for trophies generate from $ 900 million to $ 1 billion in income & # 39;.

In Namibia, the number of animals has increased from around 500,000 in the 1970s to four million today.

During the same period, Kenya, once a "hunting sky," has lost about two-thirds of its animal population, he said.

"Black and white rhinoceroses have been preserved because of trophy hunting," he said, adding that animal rights activists are often guided by emotions, not by knowledge.

There are less than 20,000 elephants there, poaching is flourishing and the national park system is not effective.

"On top of that, there is pressure from ranchers, Maasai, for example, who do not really care about regulations.

"Hunters are interested in preserving biodiversity, as long as there is biodiversity, there will be hunting.

& # 39; Private companies are much more flexible [in addressing challenges such as poachers].

"Organizations that are involved in hunting also protect poaching areas from poachers."

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