Thailand is regarded as major hub of wild animal trafficking in Asia. Thailand is home to forty endangered animal species in three hundred listed worldwide.
Animal trafficking in numbers
1 000 rangers, is the number of rangers who have been killed by poacher these ten lastyears in 35 countries because of wild animal trafficking.
139 criminals, is the number of criminals’ research trough Interpol in relation of environment’s damages.
800 animal species, is the number of animal species registered on the protection convention signed by 175 countries in 1973.
14,94 billion dollars, is the number of money earned by wild animal trafficking. Animal trafficking is fourth on the list of most profitable illicit activities, drug trafficking at the top, counterfeit the second and human trafficking the third.
9 500 announces, is the number of online announces about wild animals. In fact, poacher using increasingly internet as a point of sale’s platform. It is harder to authorities to find criminals with internet. In 2014, authorities find 9 500 announces on 280 different websites in 16 countries, which is 33 006 specimens, body section or by-product of protected wild animals available on web market.
Three cases about animal trafficking in Thailand
These last years, several cases about animal trafficking in Thailand have drawn attention.
First, a scandal in a Buddhist temple where monks had around 140 tigers for tourists’ entertainment. This temple has been around for twenty years and known as a tigers’ temple. The place was very popular for tourists until an operation lead by the authorities has shown the truth about their activities. Police found ten dead baby tigers bodies and other dead animals. Since this discovery, the temple is closed.
The second was in a zoo. Thai authorities announced the discovery of undeclared baby tigers and leopards. This zoo was actually involved in animal trafficking. Indeed, several felines without official papers have been confiscated during the operation. This action’s purpose was to prevent wild animal selling.
Recently, in Kanchanaburi, the CEO of Italian-Thai Development’s industry has been arrested by the police for poaching wild animals in a protected wildlife area. The man was arrested with other suspects and a lot of hunting equipment has been seized during their stay at the Thungyai Naresuan national park. Rangers found several dead animals including a black leopard carcass.
As a result, animal trafficking is definitely a challenge for Thailand but also in every part of the world. Besides, a lot of money is on the table regarding this kind of traffic and that’s why it is difficult for authorities to fight against this situation.