A followup to the recent story about snow leopard poachers’ arrest in Nepal by WWF Nepal staff who were involved in the operation.
“Two poachers involved in trading of body parts of endangered wild animal were arrested on 28 may 2011 from Mustang district, a district situated inside the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).
The district police office, Mustang, nabbed Shyam Lalchan, owner of a local guest house, and his employee Kulman Ghale with two snow leopard pelts.
At the police interrogation the duo denied poaching the animals. They however admitted to have skinned three snow leopards that they claimed were found dead in a place called Chaurikharka, an eight hours walk from Mustang, where the police recovered bones, pelts and carcass of snow leopard.
The operation was carried out based on a tip-off received by WWF Nepal on the pelts that were sighted in a padlocked room at the guesthouse. The police, with the help of WWF Nepal’s officials and Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation, successfully carried out the operation.
Poaching of wild animals including the snow leopard is rampant in the region. Despite stringent law against trade in body parts of endangered wild animals, curbing it has been a difficult task due to the involvement of “high-profile” racketeers.”