June 26, 2019 15:58

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Tons of pangolin scales hidden in cashew shipment

19:20 | 11/06/2019

VCN- After examining more than five tons of pangolin scales hidden in acashew shipment seized by Unit 3, under the Anti-smuggling and Investigation Department, the Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources (under the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology) concluded that the scales were from three endangered pangolin species.

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more than 5 tons of pangolin scales are hidden in the cashew shipment
More than 5 tons of pangolin scalesseized by Customs officers. Photo: T.H

The Institute of Ecology and Biological Resourcesconcluded that scales that are large and thick are scales of giant pangolins with the scientific name manis gigantean; the scales that are small and dark are scales of long-tailed pangolins with the scientific name Manis tetradactyla; and the scales that are thin and long are scales of White-bellied Pangolin with the scientific name Manis tricuspis.

All three species are included in Appendix I of the List of Wild Fauna and Flora in the Annexes of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

On May 23, the Southern Anti-smuggling and Enforcement Unit (Unit 3) issued a decision on inspection and coordinated with Unit 1, Division 2 under the Anti-smuggling and Investigation Department and Cai Mep Port Customs Branch (Ba Ria-Vung Tau Customs Department) to inspect two containers of imported raw cashew that were sent to Nam Ha Trading Services Co., Ltd., in Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City.

The inspection revealed151 bags of pangolin scales, weighing 5,264 kg. This is a banned item under the Cites Convention.

This shipment was transported from Apapa Port of Nigeria on April 13 and arrived atVung Tau Port on May 22. The case is under further investigation.

By Le Thu/ Ngoc Loan