Police in the northern city of Hai Phong seized 81 endangered pangolins from a car headed for Quang Ninh Province on the China border Monday night, news website VietNamNet reported.
The animals were found carefully hidden in the vehicle, whose driver Nguyen Ngoc Son, 27, said a person in Ninh Binh Province had paid him VND700,000 ($33) to transport them.
Nguyen Van Thuy, 25, was paid VND200,000 to act as an escort.
Pangolins, also known as anteaters, are listed in Vietnam's Red Book as endangered.
In many parts of Africa they are hunted for meat and are also used in Chinese traditional medicine.
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