The Malaysian Royal Custom managed to seize a shipment during it’s transit in Port Klang trying to smuggle 1500 elephant’s tusk hidden beneath a wooden crate that was built for “safe hiding” to store items.
The 10 crates filled with ivories placed in two different containers were shipped from the port of Lomé in Togo and transited in a few countries including Malaysia before its’ final destination, China, said the Selangor State Customs Director Dato’ Azis Yacub.
The container was labeled as transporting woods according to the customs. Having it inspected, the customs found the ivories hidden well in a few compartments below the woods about one metre deep.
Having related to the incident, a Malaysian company is being investigated for further information. If found guilty, the company will be punished with a fine of MYR 500 000 or jailed for five years or both.
Accumulatively, this is the fourth seizure by the Malaysian customs in Port Klang, and the sixth in the country. Prior to the recent incident, there were two seizures that occurred within the year of 2011 and one in early 2012. Seizures were also made in other ports such as Penang and Johor.
During the meeting of CITES, the concern of Malaysia being one of the transits for illegal trades (wildlife) has come to a highlight on Malaysia to play a serious role upon the matter.
The Selangor State Customs Director urged the public to provide information regarding similar incident if any. He also assured that the identity of the person will be kept confidential as and reward will be provided.
TRAFFIC also urged all the countries implicated in the seizure to scrutinise the investigation in order go through the cases thoroughly so that those behind the shipment will be traced.
For more information please click here.