Dept: Under counter sales make it hard to nab wildlife traffickers

Dept: Under counter sales make it hard to nab wildlife traffickers
PHOTO: The Star/ANN

PETALING JAYA - One of the difficulties in prosecuting shops that sell illegal animal products is the under counter nature of the business.

"In a lot of cases, the practitioners do not put their products on display and this sometimes makes it harder for us to identify and catch them," Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) enforcement director Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim said.

He added that those in the business, especially within the peninsula, were well aware of the raid and spot checks from the authorities such as Perhilitan and only offered their services to seasoned custo­mers.

"They keep an eye out all the time and analyse the customers who walk into their shop. So if you are a Malay man walking into their shop, asking for tiger fangs, they will immediately say no.

"If you are not a regular, chances of you even knowing they have the products for sale is very slim, so we have our ways of spotting them and catching them red handed," he said.

Abdul Kadir added that most prac­­titioners were well aware that their actions were illegal.

"If the public ever come across a situation where something like tiger fangs or antlers exchange hands in a medicine shop, we hope they report the matter to us," he said.

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