Chinese police seize nearly 400 baby Siamese crocodiles likely trafficked from Vietnam

By Reuters/Jake Spring   August 2, 2016 | 11:56 am GMT+7
Chinese police seize nearly 400 baby Siamese crocodiles likely trafficked from Vietnam
Rare baby Siamese crocodiles. Photo by Reuters/Lach Chantha

The roughly 25-cm long crocodiles were about 15 days old and were likely trafficked from Vietnam, said state-owned Xinhua news agency.

Border police seized 399 baby Siamese crocodiles, a protected endangered species, in southern China.

Police in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region said they saw three nervous-looking men moving goods in front of the house where the crocodiles were found and approached them for questioning. One man was caught, while the two others escaped.

Siamese crocodile skin is used to produce handbags and other luxury leather goods, but the reptiles can only be raised in China with a licence and trafficking in them is illegal, according to Xinhua.

China is a major destination market for many products made using exotic, and often endangered, species. The government has held high-profile events to destroy large caches of illicit animal products in attempt to discourage trafficking in them. 

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