"Is there any possibility of inter-state crime? We will investigate it. Will (the endangered animals) be smuggled to other countries? We will expand the investigation," Chief of the Public Relations Service at the Jakarta Metropolitan Police Senior Commissioner Yusri Yunus stated on Thursday
Meanwhile, Director General of Natural Resources and Ecosystem Conservation at the Environment and Forestry Ministry Wiratno praised the police for its success in uncovering the case and pledged to cooperate with various law enforcement agencies in protecting endangered animals.
Wiratno noted that Indonesia's endangered animals had fetched high prices abroad.
"Based on the results of investigation abroad, they can fetch up to US$15,000. It is very cheap as compared to Rp35 million here. In the foreign market, an orangutan baby can fetch US$10,000 to US$15,000 or equal to more than Rp150 million," he revealed.
The Sub-Directorate of Natural Resources and Environment of the Directorate of Special Criminal Investigation at the Jakarta Metropolitan Police arrested a man, identified by his initials as YI, on charges of trading endangered animals.
The endangered animals seized from YI comprised an orangurtan (pongo abelii), three Nias parrots (gracula robusta), and three Javanese langurs (trachypithecus auratu).
The suspect YI works as an animal trader in Bekasi, West Java. He runs his illegal business on the pretext of being an animal trader.
Despite having an animal shop, YI runs his illegal business online through social media, such as the Facebook platform and WhatsApp application.
YI is able to pocket Rp1 million to Rp10 million from the sale of each endangered animal.
YI admitted to running his illegal business since August 2020. However, the police will investigate the allegation that he had run the business longer than he had claimed.
If found guilty, the suspect can be sentenced to five years in jail and be fined up to Rp100 million based on the natural resource conservation law.
EDITED BY INE