Hong Kong seizes 1.5 tonnes of smuggled elephant ivory

Sep 10, 2010
A pile of seized elephant tusks in Hong Kong in 2006. Hong Kong customs officers said Friday they have seized over one and a half tonnes of smuggled elephant ivory worth 10.9 million Hong Kong dollars (1.3 million US) shipped from Tanzania.

Hong Kong customs officers have seized over one and a half tonnes of smuggled elephant ivory worth 10.9 million Hong Kong dollars (1.3 million US) shipped from Tanzania, they said Friday.

The 384 ivory tusks -- weighing 1.55 tonnes -- were found Thursday inside two containers labelled as "dried anchovies" at the Tsing Yi container terminal, the Ports and Maritime Command said in a statement.

Two men, aged 46 and 48, have been arrested as part of a continuing investigation, the statement said..

The international trade in elephant ivory, with rare exceptions, has been outlawed since 1989 after elephant populations in Africa dropped from the millions in the mid-20th century to some 600,000 by the end of the 1980s.

Anyone found guilty of importing unmanifested cargo into Hong Kong faces a fine up to two million dollars (260,000 US) and imprisonment for seven years.

In addition, those guilty of importing, exporting or possessing an for commercial purposes face a fine of up to five million dollars (640,000 US) and two years in jail, the statement said.

Kenya seized two tonnes of raw elephant ivory bound for Asian markets in August, saying it represented the country's largest recovery of in the recent past.

At least 4,000 are killed each year across Africa to supply the illegal ivory trade, according to the conservation group WWF.

Explore further: Ecologists find national park tourists offer elk and antelope shelter from predators

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Extinct mammoth tusks fill elephant ivory ban gap

Aug 13, 2010

Stumped by a ban designed to save elephants from extinction, Hong Kong's master carvers turned to a long dead species that left thousands of tonnes of frozen ivory in Siberian mass graves.

UN rejects Tanzania request for one-off ivory sale

Mar 22, 2010

(AP) -- A proposal by Tanzania to weaken the 21-year ban on ivory sales was rejected by a U.N. conservation meeting over fears the African country has been failing to crack down on rising incidents of poaching.

Elephant-size loopholes sustain Thai ivory trade

Jun 19, 2009

Legal loopholes and insufficient law enforcement mean that Thailand continues to harbour the largest illegal ivory market in Asia, says a new report from the wildlife trade monitoring network TRAFFIC.

Recommended for you

Sharks contain more pollutants than polar bears

23 hours ago

The polar bear is known for having alarmingly high concentrations of PCB and other pollutants. But researchers have discovered that Greenland sharks store even more of these contaminants in their bodies.

Moth study suggests hidden climate change impacts

Apr 15, 2014

A 32-year study of subarctic forest moths in Finnish Lapland suggests that scientists may be underestimating the impacts of climate change on animals and plants because much of the harm is hidden from view.

User comments : 0

More news stories

ESO image: A study in scarlet

This new image from ESO's La Silla Observatory in Chile reveals a cloud of hydrogen called Gum 41. In the middle of this little-known nebula, brilliant hot young stars are giving off energetic radiation that ...

First direct observations of excitons in motion achieved

A quasiparticle called an exciton—responsible for the transfer of energy within devices such as solar cells, LEDs, and semiconductor circuits—has been understood theoretically for decades. But exciton movement within ...

Patent talk: Google sharpens contact lens vision

(Phys.org) —A report from Patent Bolt brings us one step closer to what Google may have in mind in developing smart contact lenses. According to the discussion Google is interested in the concept of contact ...

Warm US West, cold East: A 4,000-year pattern

Last winter's curvy jet stream pattern brought mild temperatures to western North America and harsh cold to the East. A University of Utah-led study shows that pattern became more pronounced 4,000 years ago, ...