The Hanoi People’s Court on May 4 sentenced Pham Van Luat, a resident in Hai Phong City, to 12 years in prison for illegally transporting ivory, a type of banned goods, under Clause 1, Article 155 of the Penal Code.
On August 12, 2015, anti-smuggling police and the customs force at the Noi Bai international airport in Hanoi carried a check of Luat’s luggage after he arrived on a flight from Luanda (Angola). They found in his suitcase 24 chunks of ivory and a number of ivory bangles, weighing 50.6 kg in total.
When the ivory was detected, Luat fled the airport. More than one year later, on December 22, 2016, he handed himself in to police and admitted his violation of law.
Luat told the police that he was paid US$200 to carry the ivory from Luanda to Vietnam by a man named Quang, who he made acquaintance of while working in Angola.
The seized ivory was found to be tusks of the Loxodonta Africana elephant, a species listed in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
A separate investigation will be launched into the man named Quang, as the police has not obtained accurate information on his identity and address.VNA