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Tourists play with Nampech during a raid on Phuket yesterday

Phuket Elephant Raiders Leave Large Problem for Camps

Thursday, August 22, 2013
PHUKET: The owner of one of seven elephants on Phuket deemed to be ''suspicious'' in raids across the island yesterday has been told he can't use the elephant for work with tourists.

Yet officials are not allowed to truck the ''suspicious'' elephants away - as they once did - for fear of jumbo-sized law suits if an elephant dies on the road.

Jarung Taojan, the owner of a four-year-old female named Nampech, said at his Rawai camp yesterday that the elephant was checked at another Phuket camp in February 2012.

By November 2012, the elephant was reclassified from illegal to legal, Khun Jarung said, which is why he had no hesitation in paying 1.3 million baht for the creature in January this year.

Along with Nampech, raiders focussed yesterday on elephants at the Marriott camp in Mai Khao, Paradise Trip in Chalong, the Sailuan camp, Camp Chang in Kalim, Chang Sea View in Rawai and Eco Elephant Riding in Rawai.

More than 100 raiders took part on Phuket with other camps being inspected simultaneously in Phang Nga and Krabi.

The 14 animals checked in the three Andaman province were among 69 being checked nationwide.

Led by Norrasak Hemnithi, Commander of the Crime Suppression Division, Natural Resources and Environment Department, the team also included National Park rangers, officials from Phuket's Livestock Office, Highway Police, Tourist Police and Marine Police.

National Park regulations forbid government officials from transporting elephants because of their high value and the size of the bill if an animal dies in custody.

Ordered to keep the elephant but not allowed to use it for work, Khun Jarung could only say: ''Who is going to pay?''

Comments

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"Ordered to keep the elephant but not allowed to use it for work, Khun Jarung could only say: ''Who is going to pay?''"
How about the company responsible for acquiring an illegal elephant?

Posted by stevenl on August 22, 2013 13:09

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You will pay, Khun Jarung. It's the chance you took & lost.

Posted by Anonymous on August 22, 2013 13:23

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There is absolutely no law that forbids the officials to take away the elephant to another place, as a matter of fact they are supposed to have a place ready for cases like these ones.

It is really time that we see an update a few weeks later that something has really been done, not as till now that we find out a year later that it was all just a media show without any people going to court.

Posted by Edwin Wiek on August 22, 2013 16:03

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"There is absolutely no law that forbids the officials to take away the elephant to another place"
As mentioned in the article, the problem is that as soon as taken away, the officials are responsible.

Posted by stevenl on August 22, 2013 16:53

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well, if you can't make money with the elephant and don't want it to stay for free in your elephant wellness heaven resort, just ask where you can dump it.

Posted by elif on August 22, 2013 17:36

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YOU ALL SEEM TO IGNORE THE PLIGHT OF THE ELEPHANT IF THE HANDLERS CANT MAKE MONEY WITH THE ELEPHANT HE'LL BE STARVED AND MISTREATED.VERY CRUEL

Posted by FRED NATT on August 22, 2013 20:15

Editor Comment:

Please don't write in capitals, Fred. Better to write all in lower case. Capitals are harder to read.

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Sometimes living in Thailand is like an alternative universe, a lot of talking, a lot of scenarios and then the word "money" seems to appear and then all quiet.

Posted by Fiesty Farang on August 22, 2013 23:01


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