Fishy business busted: Thai woman nabbed selling sanctuary-seized aquatic treasures

Pictures courtesy of Sanook.

A 49 year old woman was caught redhanded selling aquatic animals captured from a sanctuary area in Rayong province. The incident took place at around 3pm yesterday at Wat Khod Thim Tharam, in the city of Rayong.

The woman, named Aun, was spotted by Suwat, a local temple boy, while she was capturing aquatic animals from the sanctuary. Despite being warned about the consequences, the woman continued with her activities, leading to the matter being reported to the local police. Suphattharapong Boonkamnert, a police investigator in Rayong City, was alerted of the situation.

Suwat provided video evidence that showed Aun capturing turtles, frogs and snails from the sanctuary area, opposite the shrine of Luang Por Khao. During the incident, Aun argued that she was not in the wrong as she was not capturing the animals from the temple area, but rather from another side of the river that falls within the sanctuary area.

Aun insisted that she had been selling the animals she captured at a local market. She offered to sell the animals she had caught to Suwat at 100 baht for a turtle, 20 baht for a frog, and free snails.

Related news

Upon receiving the report, local police arrived at the scene to investigate. However, Aun continued to deny her actions and refused to accept any wrongdoing. She emphasised that she was merely selling animals released by people for merit-making and that she was not capturing them from the temple area. She argued that she had no evidence against her as she had already sold the animals.

Fishy business busted: Thai woman nabbed selling sanctuary-seized aquatic treasures | News by Thaiger
Picture of the woman in question courtesy of Sanook.

In spite of her refusal to cooperate, the police decided to take Aun and the captured animals, turtles, frogs and snails, to the Rayong City Police Station for further investigation.

When contacted by a reporter, Seree Rueanlach, an official from Rayong’s Fisheries Department, clarified the legal implications of the incident. According to Section 56 of the 2015 Fisheries Act, it is illegal to capture aquatic animals in a designated sanctuary area, unless it is for academic purposes or the conservation of the species, and with written permission from the director or an authorised person.

Despite attempts to explain the legal implications to Aun, she remained in denial about her actions. In the end, the investigating officer charged her under Section 56 and the case will proceed according to the law.

Fishy business busted: Thai woman nabbed selling sanctuary-seized aquatic treasures | News by Thaiger
Pictures courtesy of Sanook.

Follow The Thaiger’s latest stories on our new Facebook page: CLICK HERE.

Crime NewsThailand News

Samantha Rose

Samantha was a successful freelance journalist who worked with international news organisations before joining Thaiger. With a Bachelor's degree in Journalism from London, her global perspective on news and current affairs is influenced by her days in the UK, Singapore, and across Thailand. She now covers general stories related to Thailand.

Related Articles