RM64mil worth of smuggled wildlife, contraband seized nationwide

KUALA LUMPUR: More than RM64mil worth of smuggled wildlife and contraband were seized following 35 raids conducted nationwide so far this year.

Police secretary Deputy Comm Datuk Noorsiah Mohd Saaduddin said the Wildlife Crime Bureau (WCB) under the Bukit Aman Internal Security and Public Order Department (KDNKA) detained 88 individuals during the operation held from Jan 1 until Jan 20.

“Those detained were 73 locals and 15 foreigners.

“The WCB also seized smuggled items worth RM64.7mil,” she said in a statement on Tuesday (Jan 24).

The operation was conducted based on various relevant laws, she said.

“Under the Customs Act 1967, some RM42mil worth of smuggled items were seized followed by the Wildlife Conservation Act 2010 (RM1.2mil).

“Under the Explosive Material Act 1957, RM7.7mil of items were seized, followed by the Supply Act 1961 (RM10.7mil), the Poison Act 1952 (RM2.2mil) and Section 170 of the Penal Code (RM5,200),” she added.

DCP Noorsiah said the police through the KDNKA would continue to work together with other enforcement agencies to combat the smuggling of contraband and other crimes.

“We also encourage the cooperation of the public in supplying relevant information so that we can take action,” she said.

The WCB was set up to provide a more effective impact in the war against wildlife crimes like poaching and the illegal wildlife trade.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani had previously said the creation of the bureau will enable investigations related to offences against wildlife and nature to be coordinated and supervised properly from Bukit Aman.

While the bureau would be in Bukit Aman, it will also cover Sabah and Sarawak.

The WCB is tasked with investigating illegal hunting and trade of exotic wildlife and protected flora, among others.

Ops Bersepadu Khazanah, which was launched on Sept 3, 2019, has been successful in preserving the country’s flora and fauna.

Agencies involved included the police, Customs Department and the Wildlife and National Parks Department.