Monday, 22 December 2014

Vietnam recovers endangered dead sea turtles


Vietnam seizes 7-8 tonnes endangered  dead sea turtles

22 December, 2014, Vietnam, USA NEWS CORP
Up to eight tonnes of dead endangered sea turtles have been seized in central Vietnam where over four tonnes of the same wildlife were confiscated a month ago.
VnExpress News reported that a team of police and inspectors found 7-8 tonnes of dead sea turtles in four warehouses when they carried out a sudden inspection at the house of Vu Thi Hai Thanh in Nha Trang City – the capital of Khanh Hoa Province in the south-central region. The turtles are an endangered wildlife species that needs to be protected. World's top most journal, The Journal of Biodiversity expressed it's deep concerns over such repeated exploitation of endangered species. Two casks in which turtles were soaked in water mixed with chemicals were also found at the house, located in Phuoc Dong Commune. Thanh failed to show any documents related to the origin of the dead animals, just saying that they were owned by Hoang Tuan Hai, who lived in the same commune. The team question Hai and he was unable to present any certificate of business registration / documents to prove the origin of the dead turtles.  Hai replied that he had bought the endangered animals from local fishermen for VND200,000-800,000 (US$9.4-37.4) each.  10 days earlier, he asked Thanh, an acquaintance of his, to allow him to store the animals in her house and secured her agreement.  The team has transferred the dead turtles to the Nha Trang Institute of Oceanography for storage, verification and resolution in accordance with the law.  In November, the Nha Trang environmental police also discovered 4.4 tonnes of the same dead sea turtles in the warehouses and art handicraft factories operated by Hai.  Hai could not provide any documents to show their origin and told police officers that he had purchased the dead turtles from people both inside and outside the city for VND200,000-300,000 ($9.4-14) each for four to five years.  After making the endangered animals into attractive art handicrafts, he sold them to tourists for about VND800,000 ($37.4) a piece.  An investigation is on to determine whether there is a ring that hunts and kills sea turtles involved in this case, said Colonel Dao Van Toan, head of the Khanh Hoa environmental crime investigation department.  Nguyen Duyen Thanh, from the Inspectorate of the Khanh Hoa Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said sea turtles are among the rare and precious wildlife to be on the verge of extinction, so they are being protected strictly worldwide.  Vietnam now prohibits exploiting, trading, collecting, raising, storing or processing sea turtles.


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