Eight turtle poachers arrested in Sulu

ZAMBOANGA CITY -- Eight suspected turtle poachers were arrested by authorities during a raid in Hadji Panglima Tahil, Sulu on Sunday, Jan. 22.

Authorities acted on a tip regarding the presence of an encampment in Sitio Higad, Barangay Bubuan.

Suspected turtle poachers stand behind turtle carcasses after a police raid on their encampment in Sulu Province. (BARMM PNP photo)

The raid resulted in the arrest of eight suspects, namely, Sawah Mnu Habil, Albakre Jammad Basari, Jal Hambay Sali, Asdarun Jamil Akasa, Sanibe Dirong Saali, Mulsin Hamid Mahamod, Mahadil Siri Mahamod, and Marvin Haril.

All are residents of Pangutaran, Sulu.

The lawmen also seized five motorized boats, 15 slain ‘pawikan,’ sea turtles, seven spears, five bolos, a hammer, an axe, and a boat engine.

The suspects are facing charges for violation of RA 9147 or the Wildlife Conservation Act, and RA 10654 or the law against fishing or taking of rare, threatened or endangered species.

The suspects and confiscated evidence were brought to Sulu Maritime Police Station (MARPSTA) for inventory, and for the filing of appropriate charges while the slain turtles were turned over to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.