Tortoise smuggling racket busted

Sahara Samay
Monday Jan 28, 2008

Hazaribagh, Jan 28: Police gunned two tortoise smugglers at GT Road in Hazaribagh last night when some five smugglers were trying to flee to Bengal with five sacks filled with rare species of tortoises, Samay sources said.

Police tried to intercept these smugglers on suspicion but instead of surrendering themselves, they opened firing. In the retaliatory firing, two of the smugglers were killed and three others managed to escape in the dark of night.

Police recovered five sacks filled with tortoises, they said, adding some of them were Star tortoises, which is a rare species.

These tortoises are first smuggled to Bengal and from there to countries like Indonesia and Malaysia, where they are sold at exorbitant prices.

The tortoises fetch big money because they are used in the making of some medicines and also because some people in these countries eat them.

The selling and purchasing of tortoises is banned.



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