This footage shows cops intercepting a boat carrying 11 endangered green sea turtles destined to be turned into gourmet snacks for the mega-rich.
The rare animals are listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species but are often eaten as delicacies in Indonesia.
The bust occurred at the Java-Bali sea crossing monument in Cekik, Gilimanuk, Melaya District, Jembrana Regency in Bali, between 12:30 and 3 am on Tuesday, 17th October.
A 57-year-old suspect was arrested. He has been identified only as Sumarji and hails from Sumber Sari Village in Melaya District, Jembrana, where he works as a fisherman.
The police intercepted and arrested Sumarji, who was aboard an outboard motorboat, after receiving a call from concerned residents, according to reports.
Agus Budi Santosa, the Head of the Bali Natural Resources Conservation Center (KSDA), said that they had found the green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) aboard the small vessel.
The turtles had been transported by sea and were scheduled for land transportation to a culinary market in Denpasar city, also in Bali.
Santosa explained that the illegal trade was “widespread” as the turtles are considered a delicacy in the region.
The Subditgakkum Team of the Bali Water and Air Police Directorate said the 11 turtles were found wrapped in a sack. They arrested the suspect and confiscated his boat.
The turtles have been relocated to the Turtle Conservation and Education Center (TCEC) in Denpasar, where they will receive care, including health examinations and tagging.
The suspect is in custody at the Bali Water and Air Police Command Post in Benoa, Denpasar, awaiting legal proceedings.
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