An illegal shipment carrying nearly 13 tonnes of pangolin scales, worth US$38.7 Million (RM158.5 Million), was intercepted and seized by Singapore authorities on Wednesday (Apr 3).
It was the largest seizure of pangolin scales globally in five years, said the Singapore Customs and National Parks Board (NParks). Around 17,000 pangolins were killed to make up the shipment.
The shipment was also carrying 177kg of cut up and carved elephant ivory, worth US$88,500 (RM363,000), in a news release on Thursday by NParks.
“That’s heartbreaking from the conservation point of view because pangolin scales are just made of keratin – the same material as your hair – so scientifically there is no basis for its purported cure for illnesses,” said Dr Adrian Loo, group director for wildlife management at NParks.
The haul, which was en route from Nigeria to Vietnam, was discovered in a 40-footer container, packed with frozen beef, at the Pasir Panjang Export Inspection Station. It was declared to contain only frozen beef.
The seizure was based on information received by Singapore Customs.
Read more at Chanel News Asia.