International Animal Rescue investigation helps to catch wildlife smuggler in Indonesia
An investigation by International Animal Rescue in Indonesia has led to the arrest of a wildlife smuggler at Soekarno Hatta airport in Jakarta. IAR's investigator had been tipped off by an informant that some animals were due to be smuggled to Saudi Arabia over a weekend at the beginning of March. He had also been provided with a photograph of the smuggler. When he eventually appeared in the airport the investigator was able to alert customs officials who detained him. Thirty animals were found in his luggage, some of which were protected species including three lorises, one love bird, a yellow crested cockatoo and a malucco cockatoo. The animals were all packed on top of each other and the birds sedated and hidden in a pipe. One bird was already dead.
Alan Knight, Chief Executive of International Animal Rescue, said: "This is a real coup by the combined efforts of our investigators, the customs authorities and the police that has literally stopped this wicked criminal in his tracks. We fervently hope his arrest and prosecution will discourage other wildlife smugglers in future."
IAR's team helped local wildlife rescue group LASA and the Jakarta forest department move the confiscated animals to the government-run rescue centre Tegal Alur. The smuggler was from Saudi Arabia and had bought the animals from Pramuka bird market. It is believed he has smuggled protected species to Saudi Arabia several times in the past. The smuggler's passport has been confiscated and he is due to be prosecuted.
The investigations have been made possible thanks to support from the International Primate Protection League (IPPL). International Animal Rescue has expressed its thanks to IPPL's for its financial backing of these operations which are crucial in combating the illegal trade in primates.