World Bulletin / News Desk
Customs officials have confiscated 50 kilograms of suspected rhino horns at Hanoi’s main airport, state media reported Friday.
The shipment, which was found in a suitcase onboard a Kenya Airways flight upon its arrival in Hanoi, included nine large horns and three smaller ones, reported the Vietnam News Agency.
An unnamed customs official told the state-run news agency that the horns were likely from endangered black rhinos poached in Africa and then smuggled to the Vietnamese market.
“In previous rhino horn smuggling cases, the seized horns were often cut into small pieces. The horns confiscated this time were some of the largest ever,” the official said, adding that the estimated street value of the horns was $890,000.
No suspects have been identified, with the suitcase reportedly unclaimed by its owner or recipient.
Smuggled rhino horns are periodically intercepted in Vietnam, which is one of the world’s largest consumers of the threatened animal’s iconic body part.
Rhino horns, whose shavings are consumed in tonics, are also popular among some circles of wealthy Vietnamese as both a pseudo-medicine and status symbol.
Vietnam’s consumption of rhino horns, which is illegal, has drawn criticism from abroad.
In September 2016, the Switzerland-based World Wildlife Fund called for trade sanctions against Vietnam if it failed to implement legal enforcement against the trade.Güncelleme Tarihi: 31 Aralık 2016, 00:45