Protected snakes seized from show venue in Samut Prakan
The newly introduced special task force suppressing specially wildlife smuggling and trade online, Wild Hawk, on Friday raided a snake show venue in Samut Prakarn province and seized 12 live snakes identified as protected species plus over ten snake carcasses and hundred of snake leather pieces.
Wild Hawk, or Yiaw Dong in Thai, operated under the National Parks Department’s directive, teamed up with the department’s CITES bureau and natural resources and crime suppression police, to track down the irregularity at the venue after receiving a hint from their informants. They arrested the venue’s caretaker and handed over him to the police for further interrogation. He was charged of possessing illegally wildlife and carcasses of protected species without permission, under the 1992 wildlife conservation act.
Since it was first set up a few months ago following intensified crimes against wildlife online, the team has managed to crack down the illegal acts up to 16 cases so far.
The taskforce, authorised by the department, has the authority to arrest wildlife poachers and traders under the wildlife conservation act and other related laws, including the international Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species.
In May, it opened a Facebook page to invite the public to share information with the taskforce and post updates about its suppression of the trade in a bid to share information and expand its network online to keep up with the rampant crime.
The team is investigating a fresh case concerning trade of rare hornbills, which is still not disclosed as the team has to expand its investigation in order to crack the net ring of illegal poachers and traders of the birds.