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Suspects in killing of Bengal tigers expected to surrender

KANCHANABURI: Five men accused of hunting and killing two Bengal tigers near the Myanmar border in Thong Pha Phum district were expected to turn themselves in to police today (Jan 13).

Charoen Chaichon, head of the Thong Pha Phum National Park, said today that park officials had presented evidence gathered at a campsite near the border to investigators at Pilok police station, reports the Bangkok Post.

The evidence included two slain female Bengal tigers, one shotgun, five shotgun cartridges, two home-made rifles, 176 rounds of ammunition, two bottles containing gunpowder, one bag of gunpowder, one loaded shotgun, a parcel envelop addressed to Dao Khongjitvivat, a pack of blood presure pills with the name Mrs Jorpae, and 22 ping-pong bombs, Mr Charoen said.

National park officials have sought permission from police investigators to keep the carcasses of the two Bengal tigers, four folding knives, three flashlights, one solar cell panel with its accessories, five hammocks, ropes and other items.

The national park chief said park officials Wanchai Soonkham and Uthen Buaroy had been assigned to file charges with Pilok police against the suspects for violations of the forest reserve law, the National Park Act and the Wildlife Conservation and Protection Act.

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A source said the five fugitive suspects were local residents. They planned to surrender to police later today.

Niphon Chamnongsirisak, director of the Protected Area Regional Office 3 (Ban Pong), yesterday revealed the hunting and killing of the wild animals at the Thong Pha Phum National Park headquarters.

National park rangers seized the pelts of two Bengal tigers and other items at a campsite near the Myanmar border on Jan 9.

Five people fled the campsite, leaving meat from the tigers cooking on a grill.

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