Elephant Murderers in Riau and Aceh Allegedly Still One Group

LAMANRIAU.COM, PEKANBARU – Two Sumatran elephants (elephas maximus sumatranus) died in succession during November 2019 in Riau and Aceh. Both protected animals died from poaching of elephant ivory.

The perpetrators of the elephant killers are still roaming. The death of the two elephants also received serious attention from the Indonesian Elephant Forum.

He said that it was likely that two cases of killing of Sumatran elephants in Riau and Aceh were carried out by the same group.

“Usually if there is one case they succeed, quickly go to the other. Not long in Aceh (elephants) die too, usually they are, “said a member of the Indonesian Elephant Forum Wishnu Sukmantoro, Friday (11/29).

He said, similar incidents had also occurred in 2010 and 2016. In 2010, ivory hunter groups executed elephants in Riau, Aceh, and Lampung.

Then in 2016 the same two points in Riau, namely in Bengkalis and Pelalawan Regencies. However, the last group, called the Fadli group, was arrested.

“The execution process is the same, meaning they are too. Their motives are like that, not just one point, two points. If the execution is successful today, it must be five days later in another place,” he said.

Sukmantoro, who was once the manager of the Central Sumatra WWF program, said that there were at least three groups of elephant ivory hunters in Riau and Jambi. They specifically targeted elephant ivory and could operate as far as Aceh by involving individual village chiefs.

According to him, hunter groups usually consist of financiers, as well as one shooter as the executor. They collect ivory and do not sell directly, but through intermediaries (brokers). “They are not selling directly,” he said.

He said, in the trade network there are containers in Jakarta. The container not only buys ivory, but all things related to endangered species such as tiger skins. In addition there is one large container located in Malaysia. “That is what large reservoirs sell to Thailand, including tiger skins,” he said.

According to him, the solution to prevent elephant hunting is to tighten the area’s surveillance. Moreover, two cases in Riau and Aceh occurred in the concessions of plantation companies and industrial plantations.

When there is one case of elephant killing that can be quickly identified, then the movement of the group can be tracked and blocked.

“But the case in Riau is known too late, because the elephant has been dead for five days,” he said.

In addition, the concessionaire holder must also tighten all people in and out and prohibit all types of hunting.

He said, hunters are now more adept at using minibus cars and hiding ivory under vehicles. Hunters also often impersonate members of the sniper’s union and use connections to the highest levels of management to enter into the concession. (jpc)

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