Pangolins in the News


Poachers Received Heavy Sentences for Possession of Pangolin

POLOKWANE – Two poachers have been sentenced to an effective three years imprisonment without the option of a fine for the possession of protected species (pangolin), said the police on Saturday. Oliver Tambo (37) and Kenny Mandebvui (31), both from Zimbabwe, appeared before the Mankweng Regional Court this week on two counts of possession of protected species (pangolin). This after their arrest on 27 October 2016 said, Police Spokesperson, Lt Col Moatshe Ngoepe. “These sentences emanate […]


Suspect to be Charged for Attempted Smuggling of Pangolin Scales

KOTA KINABALU, Aug 29 ― A company proprietor detained by the Sabah Customs Department for allegedly attempting to smuggle out about 8,000kg of pangolin scales worth about RM100 million via the Sepanggar Port near here on July 29, will be charged in court soon. Customs director-general Datuk T. Subromaniam said investigations into the case involving the 43-year-old suspect who was picked up on July 29, was almost complete. “He will be charged under Section 135 […]


Sabah Wants Pangolins to be Totally Protected Species

KOTA KINABALU, Aug 29 ― The Sabah government will urgently seek to upgrade the protection status of pangolins in the state to Totally Protected. State Tourism, Culture and Environment Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said there was a pressing need to raise the status to send a strong message to poachers and wildlife traffickers that the state was serious in tackling the problem. “Enough is enough. It’s been a long time coming now, but Sabah Wildlife […]


Thailand Seizes 136 Smuggled Live Pangolins

BANGKOK – Thai customs have confiscated 136 live pangolins, the world’s most poached animal, and 450 kg (992 lb) of pangolin scales worth 2.5 million baht ($75,000), officials said on Thursday. Authorities managed to intercept the smuggled pangolins which entered Thailand from Malaysia late on Wednesday after a tip-off. Director-general of Thai Customs Department, Kulit Sombatsiri, said the market value and demand of the animals and their body parts remained high, which drove smuggling.  “The […]


Customs: Malaysia Not the Only Transit Point for Wildlife Smuggling

KOTA KINABALU: Malaysia is not the only transit point in South-East Asia being used by international syndicates to smuggle wildlife, says Customs Department director-general Datuk Seri Subromaniam Tholasy (pix).   He said the perception that Malaysian ports were key transit points for wildlife smuggling was not true, but rather, this indicated Customs’ many successes against smugglers here. “We know that smugglers are using other ports in neighbouring countries. I do not want to name but they […]


Attempted Smugging 357kg Pangolin Scales Discovered at Vietnam’s Noi Bai Airport

Customs officers detected two consignments containing pangolin scales at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on April 4. The consignments were transported from Ghana to Noi Bai on February 27. Recently, many consignments of pangolin scales were uncovered at the airport, including one from Cameroon containing 357kg of scales. The traditional use of pangolin scales to treat blocked milk ducts is touted by a number of websites online, but doctors of traditional medicine said scientific […]


Taipei Sends Pangolins to Germany’s Leipzig Zoo As Conservation Ambassadors

Taipei, Dec. 14: Two pangolins from the Taipei Zoo have been sent to Germany’s Leipzig Zoo as part of the zoo’s conservation efforts to help sustain the captive pangolin population in Germany, the Taipei Zoo said Wednesday. Pangolins are considered to be hard to breed, but Taipei Zoo has a lot of experience in rescuing injured wild pangolins for over three decades. It is hoped that the animals, a male named Shui-li (水里) and a female […]


China: Hong Kong Authorities Hunt for Pangolin Smuggling Suspects

Hong Kong police and customs officers in an anti-smuggling operation confiscated HK$1.45 million worth of pangolin, an endangered species and a Chinese delicacy, into the city on Monday. The law enforcement agencies mounted a joint operation to combat smuggling activities in Sai Kung and Tseung Kwan O at about 2.30pm Monday, amid the rising number of smugglers at sea. Officers took enforcement action after spotting six people loading goods onto a speedboat at Che Keng […]


GOOD NEWS: Pangolin DNA Database is Being Developed to Combat Smuggling

This week at the IUCN conference it was announced that the Center for Conservation Biology, at the University of Washington in Seattle, was awarded a grant as part of the USAID Wildlife Crime Tech Challenge. One of 4 grand prize winners. Sam Wasser, Ph.D., and graduate student Hyeon Jong Kim will develop non-invasive genetic tests. Which will allow field researchers to identify what populations and regions poached pangolins originated from. These tests can be instrumental to […]

African White-Bellied Tree Pangolin

LARGEST Known Seizure of Pangolin Scales, It’s Devastating!

Pangolin Conservation – 16,093 lbs (7,300 kg) of pangolin scales from Nigeria were seized today in Hong Kong (an autonomous territory of China), according to customs officials. The valuable of the pangolin scales was reported as $1,805,182 US dollars (14 million Hong Kong Dollars). They were found on a cargo shipped in the Kwai Chung Customhouse Cargo Examination Compound and declared as “660 bags of recycled plastic particles”. Customs officials found that 259 bags contained pangolin scales of […]