By Ariel Fernandez
The Bureau of Customs (BOC) intercepted several illegal shipments of wildlife trade products declared as registered mails and toys at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
The shipments, containing stingray skin, moose head, preserved fox, and some 100 big spiders, were immediately turned over to the Wildlife Trafficking Management Unit (WTMU-DENR), the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), and the Bureau Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) for proper disposal.
Customs district collector Carmelita Talusan said the shipment of illegal wildlife such as stingray skin from Jakarta, Indonesia was found in a package consigned to a certain resident of Talisay, Cebu City while a moose head and preserved fox were from Norway and France consigned to residents of Cavite and Quezon City, respectively.
Another shipment of 100 spiders in plastic containers came from Poland and Malaysia consigned to residents of Sto Tomas, Batangas, Naga City, and Cebu.
Talusan said the illegal shipments of wildlife, declared as registered mails and toys, were discovered at the Central Mail Exchange Center (CMEC) headed by Customs collector Nora Cawili.
She said violators of illegal wildlife trading may face imprisonment of one to two years and a fine of P20,000 to P200,000 based on R.A 9147 (Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protective Act in relation to R.A 10863 Customs Modernisation and Tariff Act).