Men at Boon Lay Place Market attack python & hack its head with cleaver, Acres appeals for information

The animal is a protected species in Singapore.

Zi Shan Kow | April 19, 2023, 01:19 PM

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The Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (Acres) is appealing for eye witnesses and information regarding an incident involving a python that took place at Boon Lay Place Market recently.

What the video showed

In a Facebook post, Acres said it received a video of the incident at 11:25pm on Apr. 18 from by a concerned member of public.

The video showed a man and five others "violently hitting" a python using crates, wrote Acres.

At one point in the video, the python wrapped itself around the ankle of one of the men.

He picked up the python's tail to unravel it from his leg and pulled the python towards him so he could hit its head with a bucket.

The video also captured people around him laughing at the scene and throwing more items at the snake.

In another clip, the python bit the man's forearm when he tried to pick it up again. He freed his arm and brought the snake into the market while holding it by the head.

Then, using a cleaver, the man repeatedly hacked at the snake's head, causing its death.

Pythons in Singapore

The animal is a Reticulated python, which is a native species in Singapore. They are non-venomous constrictors.

Sometimes spotted in urban areas, they are important in keeping the population of pests, such as rodents, low.

Pythons are also shy creatures that will typically try to slither away, and will not attack unless disturbed or provoked.

Under the Animals and Birds Act, individuals found guilty of animal cruelty may be liable to a fine of up to S$15,000 and/ or imprisoned for up to 18 months.

Investigations ongoing

Onsite investigations and interviews conducted by Acres at 7am on Apr. 19 revealed that there are police cameras in the vicinity. Some interviewees also recalled sighting a snake at 1:30am on Apr. 18.

Acres said it has submitted all the relevant information to the National Parks Board (NParks), which will be investigating the matter further.

Acres wrote:

Acres is shocked and disturbed by the celebratory tone and all the cheering in inflicting suffering and death to a voiceless protected native species, with no indication of calling someone for help (NParks or Acres).

It is alarming that despite many educational efforts, violence towards the voiceless still lurks in our society. Such incidents involving killing/hurting snakes have been happening repeatedly, and we hope that this case will result in prosecuting the individuals involved, serving a severe deterrence for the future of our animals in the community – whether a cute cuddly animal or a scaly reptile that many of us may be fearful of.

Appealing for information

If you recognise any individual in the video or witnessed the act, you can reach out to Acres via their 24-hour hotline 97837782 by WhatsApp, email, or phone.

You can also email [email protected].

All information will be kept confidential.

Warning: The following video may be distressing, as it depicts scenes of animal cruelty. Reader discretion is advised.

Top images via Acres.