Authorities urged to stop elephant, tiger poaching

Authorities urged to stop elephant, tiger poaching

Sat, 04/04/2009 2:01 PM National

JAKARTA: A wildlife protection organization has demanded police and military forces work together to end the poaching and trading of wild animals in Sumatra.

“It has even been alleged that some of their officers commit the crimes against wildlife,” ProFauna Indonesia said in a press release Thursday.

“In fact, the law clearly states that to poach and trade protected species is against the law and offenders are liable to face a maximum of five years in prison and fines of up to Rp 100 million (US$10,000).

“If the law is fully enforced, ProFauna believes it will deter any wildlife crimes in the future,” it added.

The demand was made after two female elephants, Gia and Paula, from the Center of Elephant Conservation (PKG) in Bengkulu, Sumatra, were killed on March 23, 2009.

The two mammals were shot. Gia suffered bullet wounds to the brain that caused severe bleeding in a poaching incident described as similar to another in the center a few years ago.

Between 2004 and 2007, ProFauna discovered that at least seven elephants had been killed in the center.

On July 17, 2007, a male elephant named Pratama was brutally killed when his head was crushed and ivory tusks were removed, most likely for sale. The perpetrators are still at large.

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