Posts Tagged ‘Loo Kean Seong’

New Wildlife Law, But Old Wildlife Department

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Last week, Malaysian Customs officers stopped a pair of low-level smugglers coming into the country from Madagascar.  Instead of capitalizing on the fresh energy and goodwill of the country’s new wildlife law (and a successful Customs stop) by announcing an investigation into a longstanding Malaysian smuggling syndicate operating in Madagascar,  Perhilitan’s Law Enforcement Principal Assistant Director Loo Kean Seong  has announced that either Madagascar pay for the endangered animals’ return, or the animals will be euthanized, or sold.   

While this may be technically correct as a matter of CITES law, Loo goes on to say that Perhilitan cannot spend public money on conserving species that are not from Malaysia.  This policy of refusing to protect non-native species is what has helped make Malaysia a wildlife smuggler’s paradise.  The statement is inconsistent with Malaysia’s CITES obligations, not to mention the principles behind the country’s new law.

Those who supported Malaysia’s new wildlife law hoped that Perhilitan would finally have the tools it said it needed to stop major wildlife traffickers.  Instead, Loo’s comments indicate Malaysian wildlife kingpins may have it better than ever:  They have a new law with the appearance of teeth, and nobody willing to enforce it.   On the other hand, WWF takes a cheerier view of things here, making the valid point that this is a perfect scenario for ASEAN-WEN to get involved.  As is widely known, for years endangered Malagasy reptiles have been smuggled directly to Malaysia and via Bangkok… 

Story, from The Star:

Take back animals, Madagascar told

By LESTER KONG, 17 July 2010 (more…)