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Jakarta Post

Tiger-skin traders sentenced to 4 years in prison

  • Rizal Harahap

    The Jakarta Post

Pekanbaru, Riau   /   Fri, September 9, 2016   /  09:03 pm
Tiger-skin traders sentenced to 4 years in prison Illegal trade: Riau Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) personnel measure a dead Sumatran tiger killed by poachers at the end of September 2010. (JP/Rizal Harahap)

Rengat District Court’s panel of judges sentenced two Sumatran tiger skin-trading syndicate members Herman, alias Man bin Mausin, and Adrizal Rakasiwi, alias Adri, in conclusion of their trial to four years in prison on Friday.

The court also ordered them to pay Rp 60 million (US$4,572) in fines or face an additional three-month’s imprisonment.

The sentence imposed by the panel led by Wiwin Sulistya is heavier than the previous sentence sought by prosecutors.

“We, the three members of the judges' panel, are one voice in deciding this verdict. There has been no dissenting opinion,” Wiwin said on Friday.

The presiding judge further said the two convicts were proven guilty of possessing a sheet of Sumatran tiger skin and were aiming to sell it to a buyer who lived in Jambi and was now declared a fugitive of justice.

“They had agreed the Sumatran tiger skin would be sold for Rp 150 million. A team of personnel from the Riau Police, the Riau Natural Resources Conservation Agency [BKSDA] and the Jambi BKSDA managed to apprehend both of them at Herman’s house on April 29 before their transaction with the buyer occurred,” said Wiwin.

The judge said their crime posed a serious threat to Sumatran tigers, in which according to several witnesses who presented at their trial, only around 300 tigers still could be found in their natural habitat.

“Any sentence imposed must have a deterrent effect so that other people will think twice before they commit similar crimes in the future. Only sanctions with a deterrent effect to wildlife poachers and their syndicates could save Sumatran tigers from extinction.”  (ebf)

On the brink of extinction: In Riau, approximately 3 to 4 Sumatran tigers die as a result of either poaching or human-animal conflicts every year. It is estimated there are only 300 Sumatran tigers left in the wild. (JP/Rizal Harahap)

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