Indonesian police have arrested five alleged poachers of a pair of critically endangered pregnant Sumatran tigers and seized four fetuses that had been preserved in a jar, a forestry official said Sunday.
Four men and a woman were arrested in separate raids in two villages in Riau province’s Pelalawan district after receiving a tip from villagers, said Eduward Hutapea, a local Environment and Forestry Law Enforcement chief. If convicted, they could face up to five years in jail.
Hutapea said police confiscated the four preserved fetuses and a piece of an adult tiger’s skin from the suspects. Police are investigating to see whether the suspects are a part of an illegal wildlife animal trading organization.
The Sumatran tiger is the smallest of the tiger sub-species with a length of 2.7 meters and weighs up to 114 kilograms.
They are the most critically endangered tiger subspecies on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s red list. About 400 remain, down from 1,000 in the 1970s, because of forest destruction and poaching.
Source: Associated Press, IANS