Malaysia seizes million-dollar ivory shipment

Dec 13, 2011
Malaysian custom officers handle elephant tusks seized in the port of Klang on December 13. Malaysia has seized elephant tusks and ivory handicrafts worth an estimated four million ringgit ($1.3 million) en route from Kenya to Cambodia, a customs official said Tuesday.

Malaysia has seized elephant tusks and ivory handicrafts worth an estimated four million ringgit ($1.3 million) en route from Kenya to Cambodia, a customs official said Tuesday.

The haul is the latest to indicate Malaysia has become an Asian transit hub in the illicit ivory trade, and follows the seizure of hundreds of African elephants' tusks in several busts by Malaysian authorities in recent months.

Customs inspectors seized the container last Thursday in Klang, Malaysia's biggest port, after it was unloaded from a cargo ship.

"The cargo manifest said the container contained handicrafts (soapstone) and it was loaded in Mombasa port in Kenya," Azis Yacub, state customs director of the state of Selangor, where the port is located, said in a statement.

Officials also found carved elephant and rhinoceros ivory.

Azis said the container's final destination was the port of Sihanoukville in Cambodia.

In August, Hong Kong authorities seized nearly two tonnes of elephant ivory worth about $1.7 million in a shipment from Malaysia, which monitoring network TRAFFIC has described as a major hub for illicit wildlife products.

TRAFFIC says that the illegal has been rising globally since 2004 largely due to increasing demand in China, where ivory is often ground up and used in .

International trade in was banned in 1990, but since then several auctions of tusks from elephants that died naturally or were seized from poachers have been permitted in Namibia, Botswana and South Africa.

Explore further: Disquieting times for Malaysia's 'fish listener'

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Malaysia seizes nearly 700 elephant tusks

Sep 06, 2011

Malaysian authorities have seized nearly 700 elephant tusks bound for China, an official said, the latest in a series of hauls indicating Malaysia had become a key ivory transit hub.

Hong Kong seizes nearly 800 smuggled elephant tusks

Aug 31, 2011

Hong Kong has seized nearly two tonnes of elephant ivory worth about $1.7 million hidden in a shipment from Malaysia and detained a local man over the haul, customs authorities said Wednesday.

Huge ivory haul seized in Thailand

Apr 01, 2011

Thai customs said on Friday they had seized two tonnes of ivory worth over $3.3 million hidden in a shipment of frozen fish -- equivalent to more than 120 elephants killed.

Hong Kong seizes record haul of rhino horns

Nov 15, 2011

Hong Kong Customs officers have seized a record haul of 33 rhino horns along with ivory chopsticks and bracelets hidden inside a container shipped from South Africa, officials said on Tuesday.

Recommended for you

Manatees could lose their endangered species status

11 hours ago

About 2,500 manatees have perished in Florida over the last four years, heightening tension between conservationists and property owners as federal officials prepare to decide whether to down-list the creature to threatened ...

Bats versus wind turbines

18 hours ago

Wind turbines are responsible for the death of numerous bats. In a recent study, scientists determined the origin of these animals: they do not only come from local areas but many had been already on a long ...

User comments : 0