Tigers, lions, elephants and so on up to a total of 200 pieces of animals, 60 of them protected species by the CITES Convention of threatened species. That is the macabre image with which the Civil Guard agents were found in a warehouse belonging to a former businessman from the world of shoes in Alicante. They found him after the Internet crawl that Seprona did.
The Taxideralia operation is part of the Spanish Action Plan to Combat the Trafficking of Wild Species (Plan Tifies) of the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and Seprona.
During the same, six people, taxidermists and intermediaries have been investigated, Captain Esteban José de Diego told this newspaper. The subjects they advertised these products both online, through ad pages, such as through whatsapp groups.
The Civil Guard made the tracking until arriving at the owner of the line that was a construction company. The researchers contacted the advertiser interested in buying some of the animals and made an appointment on the ship in question. The seller was the owner of the construction company. "Another of the collaborators was a footwear entrepreneur", adds Lieutenant María Pellicer.
The Seprona discovered that the activity was carried out without any type of accreditation and that the waste was deposited directly into the sewer system, with consequent risk to public health.
Waiting to quantify the penalty and the fine, only one of the leopards were for sale for 8,000 euros. It is estimated that the illegal traffic of species moves 90,000 million dollars a year worldwide. In fact, to get an idea of this growing illegal market: "One kilo of coca costs 35,000 euros and one of rhino horn costs on the black market between 45,000 and 95,000 euros," said the captain.