Malaysia busts Vietnamese nationals for wildlife trafficking

By Toan Dao   September 4, 2016 | 02:01 am PT
Malaysia busts Vietnamese nationals for wildlife trafficking
Perhilitan Director-General Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim and the seized wildlife parts. Photo courtesy of VietnamPlus
Endangered animal parts worth $500,000 were seized in raids.

Authorities in Malaysia have arrested 12 traffickers, including eight Vietnamese nationals, and seized hundreds of parts of highly endangered species following raids on two transnational wildlife criminal networks in the country.

The remaining suspects detained during the operations in late August were two Malaysian and two Chinese nationals.

The arrests are the result of a collaboration between the Wildlife Justice Commission (WJC) and Malaysia’s Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan). The WJC is an international not-for-profit organization based in The Hague, the Netherlands.

The wildlife parts seized during their operations, worth about $500,000, included elephant ivory, pangolin scales, tiger skins, big cat bones, tiger claws and teeth, bear gallbladders and hornbill beaks, Vietnam News reported on Saturday.

Investigators from the WJC have successfully infiltrated two criminal networks operating in Malaysia; one Vietnamese and one Chinese. Having secured proof of criminal activity, raids were conducted across Kuala Lumpur leading to the arrests and seizures, the WJC said in a statement on September 2.

If convicted, the traffickers will face a fine of up to 500,000 Malaysian Ringgit ($122,225) or up to 5 years in prison, or both.

Related news:

Philippines tightens entry checks for Vietnamese migrants to prevent trafficking

Dead tigers found in Thai temple amid trafficking fears

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