Laws flouted

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Ecowatch -

FACTS about the bear bile busi­ness from Traf­fic South­east Asia and other sources:

> Malaysia is ranked at No.4 of 17 coun­tries sur­veyed as a key source and con­sumer of bear parts and de­riv­a­tives.

All bear bile, whether lo­cal or im­ported, is il­le­gal in Malaysia. But 175 of 365 tra­di­tional medicine shops (48%) in ev­ery state in Malaysia had bear bile openly for sale ac­cord­ing to a sur­vey by Traf­fic in 2012. No­body has ever been pun­ished for this.

> In Penin­su­lar Malaysia, the sun bear has to­tal pro­tec­tion un­der the Wildlife Con­ser­va­tion Act 2010, and any­one who hunts, keeps or trades it without a spe­cial per­mit can be pun­ished with a fine up to RM100,000 or jail up to three years, or both.

> In ad­di­tion, un­der the In­ter­na­tional Trade in En­dan­gered Species Act 2008, some­one pos­sess­ing bear bile can be fined up to an ag­gre­gate of RM1mil, or up to seven years jail, or both.

> The trade in bear bile in China is worth about US$250mil (RM1­bil) It’s even used as an in­gre­di­ent in mun­dane stuff like sham­poo and skin creams. Apart from an­i­mal cru­elty, it may be­come a po­lit­i­cal is­sue (that em­bar­rasses China), ac­cord­ing to Hong Kong sci­en­tist Dr Feng Yibin.

> Seizures and raids by the Wildlife De­part­ment in Malaysia have been in­creas­ing. In Au­gust 2016, dozens of bear parts (teeth, claws, gall blad­ders, etc) were seized in raids in Penin­su­lar Malaysia. In the same month in Sabah, two men were ar­rested for try­ing to sell bear parts. In Oc­to­ber 2016, a man in Pa­hang was ar­rested for try­ing to sell a sun bear on­line.

> Sun bears are be­ing hunted and killed in Sarawak and Sabah. Two sun bear car­casses were found dis­em­bow­elled with both paws chopped off in the Ku­lamba Wildlife Re­serve in eastern Sabah in 2015.

> In the Belum-Te­men­gor forests of north­ern Perak, sun bears have been found (dead or still liv­ing) with limbs caught in snares.

Some are seen miss­ing a limb, which would have prob­a­bly been crushed in traps.

— LEE SIOW LING/Traf­fic South­east Asia

Al­most 50% of tra­di­tional medicine shops in ev­ery state in Malaysia had bear bile openly for sale ac­cord­ing to a Traf­fic sur­vey in 2012.

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