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Police seize clouded leopard rug after it was posted for sale on Facebook

Tanutam Thawan

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Photo via Facebook/กรมอุทยานแห่งชาติ สัตว์ป่า และพันธุ์พืช

Police seized a rug made from wildcat fur last week after it was posted for sale on Facebook for 7,500 baht. The rug appears to be from a clouded leopard and investigators now suspect it may have come from one of the two clouded leopards recorded on hidden camera in a rare sighting last December at the Erawan National Park in Kanchanaburi’s Sri Sawat district.

The rug was examined by Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation. They pointed out 12 marks on the fur that match the clouded leopard seen in the video. Police suspect both of the clouded leopards seen in the video have since been poached. The leopards are a protected species under the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

After the rug was posted for sale on Facebook, police tracked down the alleged seller, 40 year old Thirasak Chaiphuthongt, and arrested him in Nakhon Pathom’s Sam Phran district. Investigators believe the rug may have been supplied to Thirasak by 74 year old Prakop Chosanap.

A home rented by Prakop in Kanchanaburi’s Sai Yok district was raided by a team of forest protection officers and police. Prakop was not home, but police say they found equipment they suspect is used to carry wildlife carcasses.

Police seize clouded leopard rug after it was posted for sale on Facebook | News by Thaiger

Photo via Facebook/กรมอุทยานแห่งชาติ สัตว์ป่า และพันธุ์พืช

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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