Two men were arrested yesterday when they were found leaving Sai Yok National Park on motorbikes with sidecars stuffed with 60 kg of protected deer carcasses.
Jarakwal Rassamiprom and Krissada Ratchatrangsee, both from Sai Yok in Kanchanaburi, admitted that they had killed the deer, reports the Bangkok Post, and that they considered themselves hunters.
It’s unknown what use the men intended for the carcasses, although they could have wanted to sell the meat.
If found guilty of the charge of killing wild animals in a national park, Jarakwal and Krissada could face the maximum penalty of a four year jail term and a ฿40,000 (US$1,135) fine.
The deer killed were Muntjacs – otherwise known as Mastreani deer, or barking deer – and are a protected species in Thailand.
They’re the oldest known deer in the world and are notable for their comparatively small body size. Native to South Asia, they are also found in Myanmar, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Japan, China and Taiwan – and there’s also a sizeable population of them in England and Wales.
Other rare and protected species found in Sai Yok include tigers, elephants, wild pigs, gibbons, sambar deers and the Kitti’s hog-nosed bat.
Featured image is by JJ Harrison and used under a Creative Commons licence