An international hunting organisation has suspended the membership of the US dentist accused of illegally killing protected Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe.
Safari Club International, which promotes big-game hunting worldwide, issued a statement saying memberships for Walter Palmer and his guide in Zimbabwe, Theo Bronkhorst, will be suspended while investigations are ongoing.
The Safari Club said "those who intentionally take wildlife illegally should be prosecuted and punished to the maximum extent allowed by law".
The announcement came as the US Fish and Wildlife Service is investigating whether Dr Palmer violated US law against trading in animals that have been illegally killed, transported or sold.
American philanthropists have pledged to match new donations up to $100,000 to the research team who had been tracking Cecil since 2008.
Dozens of protesters gathered outside the practice of a suburban Minneapolis dentist who killed a protected lion in Zimbabwe.
A host of celebrities have taken to social media to speak out on the killing of well-known lion Cecil in Zimbabwe by a US dentist.