Khordha (Odisha) [India], April 3 (ANI): A Crime Branch Special Task Force (STF) arrested two persons for illegal possession of leopard skin in Bolagarh during a raid conducted in Khordha district of Odisha.
The arrests were done on the intervening night of Thursday and Friday and one leopard skin and other incriminating materials were seized from their possession. The two accused have been identified as Sudhir Behera and Subash Chandra Behera, residents of Nayagarh district.
STF team conducted a raid at a place in Bolagarh area where the accused duo was about to strike a deal for selling the skin.
Both accused were arrested under section 379/411/120(B) of IPC r/w. 51 of Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. The seized leopard skin will be sent to Wild Life Institute of India, Dehradun for chemical examination.
STF SP Prashant Kumar Bhol told ANI that during the last one year, STF has seized 12 leopard skins, six elephant tusks, two deer skins, two live pangolins and five kilograms of pangolin scales.
During the same period, 24 criminals were arrested and a total of 13 cases were registered against them.
At a time when wildlife smuggling has been rampant in most parts of Odisha, the STF, police and forest department official have intensified raids. A helpline Mobile No 9439263646 is also issued by STF and anybody can give information to STF regarding wildlife crime and they would be suitably rewarded, added Bhol. (ANI)