The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) is working with the Kenyan Wildlife Service, Kenyan Police and the Lusaka Agreement Taskforce (LATF) to repatriate a consignment of 1.8 tonnes of raw ivory tusks to Africa for further investigation and enforcement actions by the African authorities.
The ivory was inspected and quantity verified by AVA and the African enforcement authorities on 23 July 2013 in preparation for the return to Africa.
The shipment is the second largest ivory seizure since 2002 and also the second consignment to be repatriated to Africa.
The 1.8 tonnes of raw ivory tusks, with an estimated value of about S$2.5 million, were seized by AVA and the Singapore Customs when the illegal consignment was in transit through Singapore on 23 January 2013, en route to another country from Kenya.
The consignment was falsely declared as ‘waste paper’ and the ivory tusks were packed in 65 gunny sacks. AVA's investigations showed that no local importer was involved in the case.
Ms Lye Fong Keng, Deputy Director of AVA’s Quarantine & Inspection Group, said: “The repatriation signals strong collaborative effort between Singapore, Kenyan authorities and Lusaka Agreement Taskforce to disrupt the illegal ivory trade”.
Mr Pius Macharia, Assistant Commissioner of Kenya Police, said: “The ivory repatriation signifies continued cooperation between Kenyan and Singaporean authorities in efforts to curb illegal trade in African elephant ivory which is the main motivation for poaching. More....