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On January 17, 2017, officers from Songkhla Wildlife Checkpoint (Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation: DNP) and Crime Suppression Division (Royal Thai Police: RTP) seized a suspect along with 8 cockatoos at Hatyai Pet Shop (Chana Branch) in Tambon Banna, Chana District, Songkhla Province, Southern Thailand. The case was reported to investigation officers at Chana Police Station and is awaiting further legal action.

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 On December 21, 2016, Department of Livestock Development (DLD) officials at Suvarnabhumi Animal Quarantine Station worked together with staff of Suvarnabhumi Wildlife Checkpoints, Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), in legal actions against a Chinese passenger of flight HX 762 (Hong Kong Airline) who was found with the intention of transporting 2 bird chicks on a Hong Kong- destined flight. The transgression was found during the x-ray inspections of carry-on baggage and no license or documents were given to authorize the animals’ transit out of the country. The bird chicks were identified to be offsprings of Sulphur-crested cockatoos, a protected wildlife species.  This particular offense is punishable under the Article 31 Communicable Disease Control Act, B.E. 2558 (2015) for transporting wildlife out of the kingdom without permission and punishable under Article 24 of the Wild Animal Reservation and Protection Act, B.E. 2535 (1992). The suspect and seized wildlife were given over to investigation officials of Suvarnabhumi Police Station for further legal actions.

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On January 9, 2017, the Director General and Deputy Director General of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) visited the site of the grounds where the carcasses of  elephants where found, in Hua Hin District , Prachuap Khiri Khan Province. They were accompanied by DNP officials, government officers, Royal Thai Army, Royal Thai Police, Department Of Provincial Administration, Department of Special Investigation, and other related departments.

The head of Phayasua Unit, the DNP wildlife enforcement unit, reported on the progress of the case on-site. The unit had received reports of wild elephants being falsified as domestic elephants, being harvested for their marketable organs and ivory, and then unceremoniously buried around the grounds of Wat Kao Itisukato. Upon receiving the reports, officials started the investigation around the reported area, which has led to the discovery of the carcasses of four elephants. Further investigation with Hua Hin District officials has also revealed that these burials were unauthorized and unreported.

A preliminary investigation has found possible falsifications in the form of misattributed elephant identities, in which officials are awaiting confirmation via DNA testing. If it was found that the death of the registered domestic elephant was concealed and its legal identity has been illegally replaced with a specimen from the wild, then the offender will be charged with further legal actions. The DNP will then give over the case to the Department of Special Investigation as part of a special investigation.

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