Screenshots of several men posing with a dead clouded leopard in Malaysia went viral recently, after the original photos were allegedly shared on Facebook.
Here are the screenshots of the photos:
Now, two individuals believed to have been involved in the incident have been told to step forward by Malaysia's Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) on May 11, 2019.
Come forward or be arrested
According to Bernama, the incident occurred at a farm in Kampung Kemuning, Alor Gajah, in Melaka.
Perhilitan has given the men one week to come forward to record their statements, and assist with determining the feline's cause of death. Otherwise, they will face arrest.
Mohd Hasdi Husin, director of Melaka Perhilitan, told Bernama:
“If they still do not come forward, we will request for advice from the prosecutor for an arrest warrant to be issued against them and this will make the situation more difficult (for them).”
The clouded leopard is classified as "vulnerable" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Mohd Hasdi stated that the case was currently being investigated under Section 68 (2) (c) of the Wildlife Conservation Act 2010 (Act 716).
The particular statute lists numerous protected wildlife in Malaysia, of which the clouded leopard is one.
It dictates that any person hunting an animal from that list without a special permit can be fined up to RM500,000 and jailed up to five years if found guilty.
Perhilitan is reportedly tracking down several uniformed personnel (in blue) pictured in the photos as well.
Top photo collage from Facebook / Siva Nadarajan