Hanoi man makes tiger-bone paste
Hanoi – A Hanoi restaurant owner has been detained for making medicinal paste from the bones of rare wild animals, including tigers and monkeys, police said on Monday.
Tran Trong Binh, head of Hanoi’s Environmental Police Department, said police had detained two men on Sunday evening at a Hanoi restaurant.
Officers found an 80-litre cooking vat containing monkey bones, as well as horns and antlers belonging to unidentified animals.
Police said an expert from the Institute for Ecology and Biological Resources identified other bones found at the site as tiger bones.
Police temporarily detained Bui Quang Hai, 55, the owner of the restaurant, and an employee who tended the cooking vat. Police said Hai had acknowledged using the bones to make medicinal paste, which he sold for over $2 000/kg.
Tiger-bone paste is a valued ingredient in Vietnamese and Chinese traditional medicine. A kilogram of pure tiger-bone paste can sell for up to $5 000 on the black market. Hai’s paste was less expensive because it included other animal bones.
Under Vietnamese law, hunting or trading in rare animals is punishable with a prison term of up to seven years and a fine of up to 20 million dong ($1 250).