HẢI PHÒNG — Customs and police agents in the northern city of Hải Phòng have discovered 3.5 tonnes of ivory and 4 tonnes of pangolin scales hidden inside a container.
On Wednesday, Senior Lieutenant Colonel Nguyễn Quang Đông, Deputy Head of the Economic Police Department, (under Hải Phòng City Police Department) said police would launch a criminal investigation into the incident for violations of regulations on endangered and rare animals.
The city's customs officials and police found the items in a container at Nam Hải Đình Vũ Port, which was registered as carrying asphalt with the receiver named as AB Plus Logistic Stock Company located in Hải Phòng.
Nearly 3.5 tonnes of ivory hidden inside a container. — Photo new.zing.vn
According to initial investigations, the container was shipped on KOTA JOHAN ship, by CMA-CMG Vietnam Joint Stock Company as the transport agent, and arrived at Nam Hải Đình Vũ Port on April 12.
The container’s sender was named Ste John Business Corporation.
So far, police have not found the owner of the shipment.
Senior Lieutenant Colonel Đông said when police opened the container, there were asphalt-containing barrels, but ivory and pangolin scales were hidden inside.
In Việt Nam, hunting, trading, poaching and transportation of even one pangolin carries punishment of one to five years imprisonment and a fine of between VNĐ500 million (US$22,000) and VNĐ2 billion ($86,700).
The country banned the trading of elephant tusks in 1992. Trading, storing and transporting ivory is forbidden, with violators fined from VNĐ5-50 million or imprisoned from six months to five years. — VNS