3 men arrested after allegedly selling tiger, leopard skins to undercover police

Three men were arrested yesterday after they were allegedly caught selling clouded leopard and tiger hides to an undercover officer. Along with three live leopard kittens, tiger and leopard hides valued at two million baht were seized by national park officers and police at a resort in Kanchanaburi, which borders Myanmar.

Officers had received a tip that illegal wildlife traders were trying to sell three clouded leopard hides and a tiger hide they had obtained from across the border in Myanmar. For the bust, an officer went undercover and reportedly negotiated with the traders, agreeing on a price of 2.2 million baht and to transfer a down payment of 20,000 baht to a bank under one of the traders.

The undercover officer met the alleged traders at a resort in the province’s Sangkhla Buri district where they were arrested by park officers and police from the Natural Resources and Environmental Crime Division. Four tiger and leopard skins were found in the rented by the men as well as three live leopard kittens, reports say.

The men, two from Thailand and one from Myanmar, were charged with possession and trade of protected animal carcasses and face a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a fine up to one million baht. If officers discover that the animals and skins were imported into Thailand, they could face additional charges.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World| Nation Thailand

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