Pangolin smuggling: Odisha Crime Branch to seek Interpol help

Bhubaneswar: The special task force (STF) of Odisha Crime Branch will be seeking Interpol’s help in tracing linkages of the pangolin scales smuggling racket in China and Myanmar.

Crime Branch STF DIG, Himanshu Lal today said that while the main accused in India have been arrested, those who are operating from China and Myanmar are yet to be arrested.

“The STF has arrested kingpin Anwar Hussain and another smuggler Konga from Mizoram. Both of them were smuggling pangolin scales to Myanmar and China. While main accused in India have been arrested we are writing to Interpol to nab the culprits who are operating from Myanmar and China,” said Lal.

The Wildlife Crime Control Bureau will also be informed about the case, said sources.

Till now 6 people have been arrested for smuggling pangolin scales from Odisha, West Bengal and Mizoram to Myanmar and China.

According to reports, among the smugglers, there are some female members. The scales were being brought from small hunters at a price of Rs 12,000 per Kg and sold for lakhs of rupees in the international market, informed sources.

It is suspected that Odisha has become the hub for illegal pangolin trade. Through several north eastern States, the animals are reportedly trafficked to China, Indonesia and other international markets.

Image source: Rainforest Rescue