Officers arrived at the house, in Moo 8, Srrisoonthorn, at 3pm yesterday (Feb 16) to find the baby crocs in a contained rock pool area in front of the house.
The raid was led by Ekamai Mala, head of the PPFO’s Fisheries Management Group together with Siripen Rattaniampongsa the Fisheries Administration Officer at the Thalang District Office.
The raid followed complaints filed about the crocodiles being advertised through TikTok as available for delivery anywhere throughout the country, said an official report of the raid.
At the home, officers arrested a man named in the report only as “Mr Theeradej” (family name withheld), 35.
According to the report, Theeradej explained that he previously had a legally valid permit to trade wild animals obtained from breeding, but that the permit expired on Sept 9 last year.
He had not applied to renew the permit, but he confessed to continuing selling baby crocodiles through the internet, the report said.
Theeradej was charged with illegal possession of protected wildlife under Section 17 of the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act, B.E. 2562 (2019) and under Section 77 of the Royal Ordinance on Fisheries B.E. 2558, the report confirmed.
The amendments introduced in the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act, B.E. 2562 brought in harsher penalties for illegal trading in protected wildlife.
Breach of Section 17 alone is punishable by a fine of up to B500,000 or up to five years in jail, or both.
The baby crocodiles have been taken into protective care by the Phuket Provincial Fisheries Office as it is the correct government office responsible for the regulation of crocodiles, the report concluded.
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