天秤行動 打擊東南亞穿山甲違法交易 | 台灣環境資訊協會-環境資訊中心

天秤行動 打擊東南亞穿山甲違法交易

2012年09月06日
摘譯自2012年9月3日ENS泰國,曼谷報導;沈瑞筠編譯;莫聞審校

東南亞地區一直有穿山甲非法交易行為。(照片由Piekfrosch拍攝)穿山甲為夜行性動物,以白蟻等昆蟲為主食。最近,在一次最大規模的跨國打擊非法盜獵、貿易穿山甲的行動中,東南亞5個國家共40個人遭到逮捕。

這次行動稱為「天秤行動」,是在6至7月間進行,由國際刑警組織環境犯罪署召集,共有印尼、寮國、馬來西亞、泰國及越南5國參與調查和稽查。透過美國國際發展署經由泰國自由地基金會的支持,本次行動逮捕了至少涉及此區200個案子的40人。

國際刑警組織環境犯罪署主管David Higgins表示,「透過國際合作來解決這種最脆弱的生物(穿山甲)的非法交易,天秤行動是個成功的案例。」他補充說,「除非我們以此行動為基礎,查明並起訴那些掌控非法貿易的人,不然我們還是很有可能在許多區域目睹穿山甲滅絕。」

多數亞洲及非洲地區都有穿山甲的蹤影。這種夜行哺乳動物藉由絕佳的嗅覺來趕知及補食小昆蟲。白天或需要保護的時候,牠們會捲曲成球狀,藉由覆蓋身體表面的大麟片來保護自己。由於傳統醫療對牠們麟片藥用的需求、及牠們的肉被視為珍饈,穿山甲被大量捕獵及非法交易。

由世界海關組織及東南亞國協野生物執法網路協助,天秤行動執法人員在餐廳及其他場所進行突擊搜查。這次行動共查獲1220隻穿山甲,其中接近一半個體仍存活著。除了穿山甲,並查獲鳥類、蛇類及8隻幼虎。

越南海關查獲的冷凍穿山甲(照片由越南海關提供)另外,印尼當局在一艘開往越南的船上貨櫃發現了一批冷凍穿山甲。藉由國際刑警組織的I-24/7安全通信系統使用及世界海關組織的協助追蹤,這個貨櫃在越南海防市被海關截獲。貨櫃內發現了總重量超過5噸、260箱的冷凍穿山甲。目前兩國正合作確認嫌犯。

穿山甲屬的8種穿山甲目前都受到國際法規的保護,也都在華盛頓公約的管制名單中,但每年仍查獲數千隻非法交易的穿山甲。雖然這些查獲的個體有些在查獲時仍活著,但由於在惡劣運輸環境及在不適當的環境被釋放,牠們的生存機率極為渺茫。

國際刑警組織對天秤行動發表的聲明中表示,由於穿山甲深居簡出的習性,非法交易對牠們及牠們的棲地的衝擊難以評估,但據信一些東南亞森林中已無穿山甲的行蹤。

北京海關查獲穿山甲麟片。(照片由中國海關提供)中國也在打擊穿山甲走私之列。今年5月,中國雲南省騰沖縣人民法院判處2名走私者10年有期徒刑及人民幣8000元罰金。這兩個人在2011年11月參與走私42隻穿山甲。

同樣在5月,深圳海關在香港到深圳的公車上查獲一名乘客走私25.4公斤的穿山甲麟片。這位中國籍的乘客聲稱這些麟片是他在巴基斯坦工作時發現的,他打算帶回中國販售。此案仍在調查中。

今年6月,北京機場海關在兩名由卡達杜哈返回的中國籍旅客身上查扣42公斤的穿山甲麟片及310公克的犀牛角。今年4月,越南執法人員在接獲線報後,在越南義安省查扣了71隻穿山甲活體。

國際野生動物貿易調查委員會(TRAFFIC)大湄公計畫人員Naomi Doak博士表示,「境內有野生穿山甲族群及走私犯罪的國家,正努力解決這個問題。然而,因為現行法律沒有嚴格執行,而且缺乏對私梟嚴厲的刑罰,穿山甲在亞洲的未來還是很黯淡的。」

國際野生動物貿易調查委員會2010年指出,馬來西亞沙巴的一個集團在18個月內走私了2.2萬隻穿山甲。胎們敦促當局銷毀死亡個體,並將活體送到收容機構,確保沒有人會從中獲利。

為了回應亞洲和非洲的穿山甲危機,包含層出不窮的非法交易,世界自然保育聯盟物種存續委員會(IUCN-SSC)穿山甲小組今年重新組成。該小組副組長Dan Challender表示,「IUCN-SSC穿山甲小組能讓我們更瞭解這個物種及牠們面臨的威脅。」Dan Challender也是肯特大學德雷爾保育及生態研究所研究亞洲穿山甲交易的研究者。

小組的任務是「藉由瞭解全球穿山甲的保育、自然史及生態習性成為全球穿山甲對外發聲的管道,並推動符合穿山甲需求的行動。」

國際野生動物貿易調查委員會東南亞辦公室的副主任Chris Shepherd表示,「組織這個小組,匯集許多專業人事來共同致力於保育這種神奇的生物,將是穿山甲長期存續的關鍵。」

Pangolin Traffickers Across Southeast Asia Busted
BANGKOK, Thailand, September 3, 2012 (ENS)

Forty people have been arrested in five Southeast Asian countries in the largest coordinated operation against the illegal poaching and trade in pangolins, nocturnal mammals that feed on termites and other insects.

Operation Libra, coordinated by Interpol’s Environmental Crime Programme, took place in June and July and involved investigations and enforcement actions across Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

Supported by the Bangkok-based Freeland Foundation through a grant from USAID, the operation led to the arrest of more than 40 individuals, with some 200 additional cases currently under investigation across the region.

David Higgins, head of Interpol’s Environmental Crime Programme said, “Operation Libra is an outstanding example of the results that can be achieved through international cooperation in addressing the trafficking of one of the world’s most vulnerable animals.”

“But unless we build on the momentum started by this operation and identify and prosecute those controlling the trade, it is highly likely we will see the extinction of pangolins in many regions,” said Higgins.

Pangolins are found across most of Asia and Africa. The nocturnal mammals feed on insects using a well-developed sense of smell to locate their prey. During the day, and for protection, pangolins curl into a ball, protected by large scales which cover their bodies.

Pangolins are poached and illegally traded by the thousands, due to a high demand for their scales, which are used in traditional medicine, and their meat, which is considered a delicacy.

During Operation Libra, conducted with the assistance of the World Customs Organization and the ASEAN-Wildlife Enforcement Network, enforcement agencies conducted raids on restaurants and other premises across the region.

Some 1,220 pangolins were recovered, almost half of them still alive. In addition to pangolins, birds, snakes and eight tiger cubs were also seized in the raids.

In one case, as a result of close international cooperation, Indonesian authorities discovered a shipment of frozen pangolins bound for Vietnam.

Interpol’s I-24/7 secure communications system was used and additional assistance provided by the World Customs Organization to track the shipment to Hai Phong, Vietnam, where it was intercepted by customs officers.

The shipment was found to contain 260 cartons of frozen pangolins weighing five tonnes in total. The two countries are working together to identify the suspects.

All eight species of pangolin are protected under national laws, and are also covered by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, an international treaty.

Still, thousands of illegally traded pangolins are seized every year. While some of the animals are found alive, their chances of survival are poor due to harsh transportation conditions and their release in unsuitable environments.

Because of their reclusive nature, the impact of the illegal trade on the pangolins and their habitats is difficult to assess, but some Southeast Asian forests are believed to be nearly devoid of pangolins, Interpol said in a statement announcing the results of Operation Libra.

China is cracking down on pangolin smugglers. In May, Tengchong County People Court in China’s Yunnan Province sentenced two men to 10 years each in jail and fined them CNY8,000 for their part in smuggling 42 pangolins in November 2011.

Also in May Shenzhen Bay Customs seized 25.4 kg of pangolin scales from a passenger on a shuttle bus from Hong Kong to Shenzhen. The Chinese passenger arrested said he had obtained the scales when he worked in Pakistan and planned to sell them in China. The case is under investigation.

In June, Beijing Airport Customs confiscated 42 kg of pangolin scales and 310 grams of rhino horn, carried by two Chinese nationals arriving from Doha, Qatar.

In April, Vietnamese enforcement authorities seized 71 live pangolins in Nghe An Province on the north central coast of Vietnam after receiving a tip that a car was transporting the endangered species.

“Countries with wild pangolin populations and those key to the on-going illegal trade are ramping up efforts to combat the problem,” said Dr. Naomi Doak, Greater Mekong Programme Coordinator for the nonprofit wildlife traffic monitoring network, TRAFFIC.

“However, without stricter enforcement of current laws and tougher sentences for illegal wildlife traders, the future for this species in Asia looks very bleak,” said Dr. Doak.

In 2010, TRAFFIC Southeast Asia reported that just one syndicate in Sabah, Malaysia was responsible for trafficking 22,000 pangolins over an 18-month period.

TRAFFIC is urging authorities to incinerate any dead pangolins and transfer those still alive to a rescue center, to ensure no one profits from the crimes.

In response to threats to pangolin populations in both Africa and Asia, including persistent illegal trade, the International Union for Conservation of Nature Species Survival Commission (IUCN-SSC) Pangolin Specialist Group was re-formed this year.

“The IUCN-SSC Pangolin Specialist Group aims to further our understanding of pangolins and the threats they face,” said Dan Challender, co-Chair of the re-formed group and a researcher studying pangolin trade in Asia, based at the University of Kent’s Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology.

The group’s mission is to “be a global voice for pangolins by working to advance knowledge and understanding of pangolins worldwide, their conservation, natural history and ecology and to catalyze action to meet these needs.”

“The formation of this Specialist Group is a great step forward” said Chris Shepherd, deputy regional director of TRAFFIC in Southeast Asia.  “Bringing together a wide range of expertise and dedicated people to focus on the conservation of these amazing animals is key to their long term survival.”

※ 全文及圖片詳見 ENS