KUCHING: Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) had crippled five illegal wildlife trading syndicates in Kapit last Saturday.
Assistant Minister of Urban Development and Resources Datu Len Talif Salleh, who is also SFC chairman, said that SFC’s enforcement team had raided the first location and seized 148 pieces of hornbill ivory, 16 pieces of pangolin scales, six deer antlers and three barking deer antlers.
During the raid, SFC’s team also found 183 bear bile, 96 pieces of porcupine thorns, peacock and hornbill feathers, as well as other various parts of wildlife that had yet to be identified, he added.
“A 56-year-old male suspect was nabbed after being caught red-handed during the time of the raid. Further investigations are however needed to determine if he was involved with any syndicate,” he told reporters after launching an illegal wildlife trade workshop at a local hotel, here, today.
Len Talif also disclosed that during their patrol in Kapit, SFC enforcement officers found animal body parts, which were believed to be used for traditional medicine purposes inside a coffee shop that was no longer in operation.
He said the SFC enforcement officers had also lodged reports with the police and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) after the coffee shop owner had allegedly offered money to the SFC enforcement officers with the hope that no action would be taken against him.
“Another four cases of selling of wildlife animals took place at Teresang Market, which involved softshell turtle meat, deer and kijang antlers as well as bear skull,” said Len Talif.
Meanwhile, he also said that enforcement would be tightened at the border between Sarawak and Kalimantan to prevent illegal wildlife trade which was prohibited by the state government.
Also present during the press conference was SFC chief executive officer Zolkipli Mohammad Aton and other officials.