Six suspects have been arrested for illegal possession of pangolin scales.
The six were apprehended this afternoon by Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) officers. They were driving along Mombasa Road to an undisclosed destination.
“The boxes containing the pangolin scales were stuffed in one of the vehicles while the suspects distributed themselves in either of the two motorvehicles,” said KWS in a statement.
The vehicle loaded with the contraband, a Toyota Premio Registration number KCF 922J is said to belongs to a clearing and forwarding agent based at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.
Pangolins, which are scales-covered, endangered mammals are the world’s most trafficked animals. They are in high demand in countries like China and Vietnam, for their meat and scales. While the meat is considered a delicacy, the scales are used in traditional medicine and folk remedies.
“All eight pangolin species are protected under national and international laws,” says the World Wildlife Fund. Between 2011 and 2013, about 200,000 pangolins were killed around the world.
KWS said in a statement that all the six suspects were booked at Lang’ata Police Station after being interrogated at KWS headquarters.
They will be arraigned in court tomorrow.