6.2 tons of pangolins seized in northern Vietnam

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Hai Phong customs authorities said Monday they have seized more than 6.2 tons of pangolins smuggled in from Indonesia at Hai Phong Port.

The consignment bill of lading showed that a company headquartered in adjacent Quang Ninh Province temporarily imported for re-export frozen fish and their scales, bones, and stomachs, the customs department said.

But the re-export destination is not mentioned.

The department has also seized 1.2 tons of pangolin scales and 10.6 tons of the animal's meat illegally smuggled through Hai Phong Port this year.

Pangolins are protected under both the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora and Vietnamese law.

Under the law, anyone who illegally hunts, kills, breeds, or keeps endangered wild animals in captivity or transports or trades animals' body parts or products made from them could be imprisoned for up to seven years.

They can also be fined up to 500 million (US$23,720).

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