The Maluku marine police shot the four-meter-long crocodile using an SS1 V5 rifle on Thursday during a search mission, said Maluku police spokesperson Sen.Coms. Muhammad Roem Ohoirat on Friday in Ambon.
The crocodile was spotted by several residents of Waimangit Village near a river around 5.41 p.m. local time on Thursday. The village head then asked the police to execute the wild animal as the villagers suspected it had eaten a boy, identified as Johari Hentihu, the previous day.
The crocodile is believed to have snatched the boy when he went swimming near the village's beach around 11 a.m. local time on Wednesday.
Hentihu had reportedly gone swimming with his friends Murni Sarea, Cinta Vanolong, and Lala Umasugi. After they finished swimming, Hentihu’s friends left him alone in the water. When they returned several minutes later, Hentihu was nowhere to be seen. They reported him missing, Ohoirat stated.
Hentihu's family and local villagers searched for him, but failed to find him. So they reported the matter to the local police and SAR agency.
The search operation was conducted by five personnel of Maluku police's marine unit, led by Adjunct First Inspector Otis Damaryanan, along with several members of the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) and local villagers.
The police managed to find and slay the crocodile. The remains of the deceased boy were fished out of the crocodile's stomach and buried, the police spokesperson informed.
Related news: Crocodile enters residential area in Kalimantan's East Kotawaringin
Crocodile attacks have been repeatedly reported from different parts of Indonesia.
In February, 2019, a fisherman named Julhaidir, 41, was attacked by a big crocodile in the Seranggas River, East Kotawaringin District, Central Kalimantan Province. He lost one of his arms in the attack.
According to a local resident, identified as Yansyah, the incident occurred late afternoon when the victim was taking a bath in the Seranggas River, a tributary of the Mentaya River, in the Lempuyang Village area. (INE)
Related news: Five saltwater crocodiles trapped in Riau`s Singingi District
Related news: Crocodiles roam about at beaches, disrupt Kupang`s tourism
EDITED BY INE