SEPANG: The authorities are studying the possibility of including whipping as one of the penalties in future amendments to an anti-poaching law.
Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) director-general Datuk Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim said other proposed amendments to the Wildlife Conservation Act 2010, which are to be tabled in Parliament at the end of the year, included up to a RM1mil fine and 15 years’ imprisonment for those found guilty of poaching.
“We expect the proposed amendments to be tabled during the next Parliament meeting at the end of the year.
“We want to ensure a severe sentence for illegal hunters or poachers,” he said after attending the Ops Bersepadu Khazanah (OBK) meeting yesterday.
“Imposing whipping would be a good deterrent for poachers but we are still studying it,” Abdul Kadir said.
Under the OBK which involved various agencies, including the police and Forestry Department, Abdul Kadir said 36 investigation papers (IPs) were opened last year.
“We also arrested 82 suspects and destroyed 460 traps nationwide. As of August this year,12 operations have been conducted and 43 IPs have been opened.
“Eighty-six people, including 62 Malaysians and nine Indonesians, were detained this year while RM1.3mil worth of items were seized,” he said, adding that 543 traps were destroyed this year.
“We also discovered 76 camps for illegal immigrants and 215 evidences of hunting. One of the cases involved the arrests of 12 people at a wildlife conservation reserve in Krau, Pahang,” he said.
Abdul Kadir said four cases had been prosecuted while six others were still pending.
“Thirty-three cases still require further investigation,” he added.
Abdul Kadir also said that foreign poachers were found to be mostly illegal immigrants from Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia while Malaysians acted as the middlemen.
“We will cooperate with other agencies as part of the OBK to curb poaching in the country,” he noted.
Abdul Kadir urged anyone with information on crimes against wildlife to contact Perhilitan through its hotline at 1800 88 5151 or through e-aduan at www.wildlife.gov.my.
Meanwhile, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador praised police frontliners involved in the OBK, especially the General Operations Force.