KOTA KINABALU - Sabah wildlife officials have detained a foreigner whom they believed had stabbed an orang utan found in a plantation in Beluran, located at the state's east coast.
Wildlife Department director William Baya said the arrest came following detailed investigations including interviews with several plantation workers.
"We have detained the suspect who holds a valid passport," he said.
William said the 20-year-old male orang utan that was found with multiple stab and slash wounds had since been name Gedau, taken from the name of the area where he was found.
He said Gedau was responding to treatment and had started eating in larger quantities.
However, he added that Gedau still had a long way to go to fully recover.
"All I can say for now is that Gedau is showing positive signs of improvement, though we still consider him to be in critical condition. He is also interacting well with our vets who are treating him," he said when contacted.
William said they were now feeding Gedau with bananas, watermelon, oranges and milk to speed up his recovery.
Some plantation workers first noticed Gedau resting under a tree at the estate on July 14, but only informed their employer a day after when they saw the wounds on his body.
The plantation owner then immediately called the Wildlife Depart-ment, and Gedau was given emergency treatment before he was brought to the Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in Sandakan.