Public concern saves wildlife from cooking pot
By Mazlinda Mahmood
SHAH ALAM: A year-old Malayan honey bear, a leopard cat and a slow loris were seized from a condominium in Desa Pandan, Kuala Lumpur, in a raid by the authorities on Friday.
A 25-year old woman who works in a hotel in Kuala Lumpur was also detained to have her statement recorded before she was released on bail until Dec 29 for the case to be mentioned in court.
The raid was conducted by a team from the Department of Wildlife and National Parks (Perhilitan) Selangor following a tip-off from a member of the public. The animals, which were kept in cages, are worth more than RM6,000.
State Perhilitan deputy director Mohammad Khairi Ahmad said there was a high demand for the Malayan honey bear, a protected animal, among exotic food lovers and restaurant owners.
"The woman claimed that the protected wildlife was a personal collection and not for sale.
"We are investigating her claim that the animals belonged to her cousin. We are now looking for a man, in his 30s, to assist in the investigations," he said at the state Perhilitan office, here, yesterday.
|The leopard cat (left), and the slow loris were rescued in a raid on a condominium in Desa Pandan, Kuala Lumpur. — NST pictures by Roslin Mat Tahir|
Khairi said they believed the animals had been trapped and sold by the Orang Asli in Negri Sembilan.
He said the woman could be charged under the Protection of Wildlife Act which provides for a maximum penalty of RM3,000 fine or a jail term of not more than three years or both on conviction.
|Selangor Department of Wildlife and National Parks deputy director Mohammad Khairi Ahmad (right) checking out the rescued year-old Malayan honey bear.|