Malaysia: Two men nabbed, over 600 turtle eggs seized

Goh Pei Pei New Straits Times 8 Sep 19;

KUCHING: The Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) enforcement team nabbed two men for selling sea turtle eggs at Pasar Tamu Kubah Ria on Saturday.

SFC chief executive officer Zolkipli Mohamad Aton said the first suspect, aged 65, was caught at 9.45am and 214 eggs were seized.

“When our team returned to the market for another round of patrol in the afternoon, they arrested a 26-year-old man with 438 sea turtle eggs. We had lodged a police report for further investigation,” he said in a statement today.

On the same day, another team raided a stall at Bandar Riyal market in Kota Samarahan for selling wild boar meat.

A 62-year-old male suspect was nabbed and 17 packets of the wildlife meat were seized.

Zolkipli said anyone who hunts, kills, keeps, sells or consumes protected animals faces a one-year jail term and RM10,000 fine.

“In the case of the sea turtle which is a totally protected wildlife in Sarawak, the maximum fine is RM50,000 and five years’ jail,” he said.

Meanwhile, commercial sale of bearded pigs is strictly prohibited under the Sarawak Wildlife Protection Ordinance 1998. The seller and seller can be fined up to RM5,000 and RM2,000 respectively.

Zolkipli added the state government allocated RM70 million for SFC to deploy reef balls along the state shoreline to conserve and protect the marine life, especially the sea turtles.

“We are serious in combating and eradicating illegal wildlife trade and its supply chain. Hence, any sales of the eggs must be reported to the authorities.

“We will continue to intensify our efforts against these illegal activities and raise awareness on wildlife conservation among the public.” he added.