250k USD Worth of Pangolin Scales Seized from Speedboat – Hong Kong


The seized pangolin scales and animal furs. Photo: Hong Kong Customs

The seized pangolin scales and animal furs. Photo: Hong Kong Customs

At 2 am, yesterday, Customs officers spotted people loading goods onto a speedboat on the coast of Lau Fau Shan in northeastern New Territories. Officers intercepted them and found five cartons containing 130 kilos of pangolin scales and 15 bags holding 310 kilos of furs (appearing to be from small white animals), with a total value of HKD2 million (250k USD, instead by Pangolin Conservation).

The government statement did not specify whether any arrests were made. A customs official also told Coconuts Hong Kong that a second pangolin seizure was made today; details will be announced later in the day.

Pangolins, scaly anteater-like creatures native to Africa and Asia, are the world’s most trafficked mammal. It’s estimated that more than a million pangolins have been illegally poached in the past decade, with their meat served as a delicacy in some areas and their scales being used in traditional Chinese medicine.

By law, smuggling can be punishable by a fine of up to HKD2 million and seven years’ imprisonment. Under the Protection of Endangered Species of Animals and Plants Ordinance, exporting an endangered species can be punishable by a fine of up to HKD5 million and two years’ imprisonment.

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