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Phuket officials seize baby elephant from beach tout

PHUKET: Livestock officials together with Cherng Talay Police have seized a baby female elephant recently seen paraded along Surin and Bang Tao beaches by a mahout, touting for Phuket tourists to pay to have their photos taken with the infant pachyderm and to play with.

tourism, animals, crime,

Tanyaluk Sakoot

Monday 1 August 2016, 06:00PM

The elephant, 6-year-old “Nang Chok”, was taken into protective custody at Bang Tao Beach, Cherng Talay, this afternoon (Aug 1).

Her registered owner, Boonchu Rattanadilok Na Phuket, is now facing charges of smuggling Nang Chok into Phuket.

“The microchip implanted in the elephant confirmed her identity and origin,” said Surajit Witchuwan of the Phuket Provincial Livestock Office.

“The elephant is a female called ‘Nang Chok’. She is 6 years old. She was born in Surin province (in Isan) and microchipped and officially registered in Tak province,” he told The Phuket News.

Mr Surajit estimated Nang Chok to be valued at about B1.4 million.

“She was transferred to Phang Nga province, then moved to Phuket without permission,” he said.

Lemongrass House

“We will hold Nang Chok for 30 days until a suitable location has been chosen, where we will send her,” Mr Surajit said.

“In that 30 days, we will look for other suspects who have been seen touting baby elephants in Phuket. We are aware of reports of touts with baby elephants seen in Patong and at Tritrang (south of Patong).

“We have evidence confirming that Nang Chok is the one seen on Bang Tao and Surin beaches (see story here), but I am not sure if she is same elephant that was seen in Patong and at Tritrang,” he said.

“But if we do find other touts with baby elephants during the 30 days, they will obviously be different baby elephants,” he added.

Police are continuing to question Boonchu for extra information,” Mr Surajit said.

“He has already admitted to the charge of moving an elephant without permission,” he said.



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Ed Sanders | 03 August 2016 - 18:05:41

Good Idea RVRBRT, Send her to Elephant Nature Park rescue in Chiang Mai, and make that heartless fool of a mahout pay for all transport costs and upkeep of the sweet animal for as many years as he beat it and profited from it.

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MrLion | 03 August 2016 - 16:24:46

I was surprised in a good way at first with this article. I though they cared about the welfare of the animal. I'm too naïve, it was about money. 
Maybe you should concentrate on improving the life of those beautiful animals instead of punishing people who do not torture them the legal way. 

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rvrbrt | 02 August 2016 - 02:01:22

Send her to Elephant Nature Park rescue,in Chiang Mai and also in PHukett

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Kurt | 01 August 2016 - 18:14:03

Finally! Quite a relieve. Police are continuing now their investigation. Perhaps some more baby elephants?

Beach touting is a crime, against the thai law. Guess this 'mahout' will locked up for many years, as he was cruel towards a baby elephant touting her without any consideration about the health of the poor animal.

Pity that tourists didn't know how bad that daily beach parade in baking sun and heat reflacting beach sand was for this baby elephant.

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Asterix | 01 August 2016 - 18:05:12

I just came back from Big Bhudda and i was surprised to see 3 chained young elephants.

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