The Tiger Temple Thailand was a Buddhist Monestary where hundreds of tigers were born for the tourism industry. Over a 9 yer period, Cee4life conducted one of the most grueling undercover investigations in conservation history to uncover the evidence on the continuous disappearance of tigers.
The first report was given to the Department of National Parks, Plant and Wildlife Conservation, Thailand (DNP) in December 2015 and then released to the public on 22 January 2016. Soon after this the first 10 tigers were removed from the Tiger Temple.
* Link to Tiger Temple Report by Cee4life – The Tiger Temple Report
Cee4life worked with National Geographic journalist, Sharon Guynup, on the lead up to the Tiger Temple Report release. National Geographic released an exclusive report in conjunction with Cee4life Tiger Temple Report.
* Link to National Geographic Exclusive – Tiger Temple – http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/01/160121-tiger-temple-thailand-trafficking-laos0/
* Link to National Geographic Video – http://video.nationalgeographic.com.au/video/news/160121-thailand-tiger-temple-trafficking-vin
A second report on the sales, gifting and international transport of tiger body parts from the Tiger Temple, was given to the DNP in May 2016. Soon after this report was presented, the remaining 137 tigers were removed.
This is said to be the biggest tiger save in history.
Note: The second report has not been released to the public at this stage. A third report has been compiled which has not been released yet.
During the raids on the Tiger Temple, 40 dead tiger cubs bodies were found in jars of liquid, some in preservative and others in wine. Tiger skins/fur were found along with other animal bodies and thousands of tiger skin amulets/talisman.
In December 2016, the newly formed business, Tiger Temple Company, was in the process of building new enclosures meters from the notorious “old” venue, in addition to targeting 100+ tigers from a zoo in the Nakhon Nayok region of Thailand in an effort to relocate the tigers and reboot the tiger business.
Court cases are still pending for the disappearance of tigers and more.
ILLEGAL TIGER BODY PARTS PURCHASED AT TIGER TEMPLE THAILAND SEIZED IN AUSTRALIA
Cee4life Correspondent Report CCR
After receiving credible information from the Australian based Not-for-Profit organisation, Cee4life (Conservation and Environmental Education 4 Life), Australian Federal Police Border Control/Immigration Officers, seized tiger body parts being brought into Australia on 2nd April 2016.
Cee4life had tracked multiple people between 2010 – 2016, who had purchased or were gifted tiger body part trinkets from the now defunct Tiger Temple, Thailand.
An ex-Tiger Temple volunteer had purchased the illegal tiger body parts at the notorious Tiger Temple for 7500 Baht (approx. $280 AU). They then proceeded to travel from Thailand to the UK, USA, Indonesia and then to Australia. When attempting to enter Australia, from information supplied by Cee4life to the Australian Federal Border Control Police, this person was detained and the illegal tiger body parts were seized.
Cee4life has since spoken to the offender, who has requested anonymity.
A Cee4life representative stated, “Although Cee4life had warned volunteers, staff and tourists at/to the Tiger Temple for many years on the ethics and legalities regarding the tigers, it was always brushed aside, ignored and defended in a volatile manner. Not only is it illegal to buy, sell, take or kill tigers and their body parts, but to transport body parts across international borders can equate to trafficking.”
“In the case of this ex volunteer who was detained in Australia, it equates to ignoring repeated warnings and paying the price. This is yet another example of human driven contributing factors [people ignoring warnings] that keep the demand of tiger body parts alive.”
“This volunteer had been told by Tiger Temple staff that if they were stopped with the tiger body parts [ within Thailand and at any international border crossing] they were to tell the Officers [ Police, Border Control/Immigration] that it was a dog tooth. This proves that Tiger Temple sales persons knew that selling these tiger body parts was 100% illegal. There is no excuse and relatively innocent but gullible people have paid a high price for the Tiger Temples corruption.”
Prior to being caught in Australia, the offender crossed into countries that have very harsh punishments for wildlife trafficking crimes. If caught, it could have ended with them serving 10 years in a notoriously hard prison.
“At any time, they could have been caught. This is one of literally hundreds, if not thousands of people who have bought or been gifted tiger body parts from the Tiger Temple.“
The DNA of the confiscated tiger body parts can be used to trace back to tigers from the Tiger Temple, along with the offender’s statement and more, confirms the selling, buying and international transport of illegal tiger body parts.
Note: IF YOU HAVE PURCHASED OR BEEN GIVEN A TIGER BODY PART “MEMENTO” FROM TIGER TEMPLE PLEASE CONTACT CEE4LIFE URGENTLY.
Investigators from Cee4life found evidence that the Tiger Temple had been selling and gifting illegal tiger body parts to multiple staff, volunteers, visitors and guests dating back to approx. 2010. The buying, selling or trading of tiger body parts in Thailand is illegal in both the laws of the country and under CITES (Convention of the International Trade of Endangered Species, Wildlife and Plant Species). The further transportation across international borders of protected and endangered species body parts without any legal permission, is a crime punishable by the laws of each country.
The tiger is a critically endangered species and is protected by law in most countries and is an Appendix I listed species under CITES.
ABBOT OF TIGER TEMPLE FACES CHARGES BUT SEEK 100+ MORE TIGERS
Bangkok, THAILAND, 23 December 2016
The Abbot of the infamous Tiger Temple Thailand, Phra Acham Phoosit (Chan) Kanthitharo, will face charges of illegal wildlife trafficking tigers in 2017 after the Department of National Parks Thailand discovered the DNA of dead tiger cubs found in the grounds of Tiger Temple during confiscations in June 2016, did not match any DNA of living and present tigers within the Tiger Temple.
Six of the cubs had no match-able DNA while another 15 dead tiger cubs matched only one present living parent from the Tiger Temple.
The Abbot is identified as the prime suspect involved in illegal tiger trafficking, and the secondary suspects are committee members.
As these charges come to light, the Tiger Temple is attempting to purchase 100+ tigers from a zoo in Nakhon Nayok province in Thailand.
Sybelle Foxcroft, Director of Australian NGO, Conservation and Environmental Education 4 Life – Cee4life, [who released the 9 year investigative report,”Tiger Temple Report”] stated, “It is no surprise that these cubs have unidentifiable DNA. Throughout our investigations numerous witness’s, including Cee4life investigators, saw cubs born and then disappear, and new cubs arrive in the middle of the night”.
Foxcroft continued, “Any attempt by anyone associated with Tiger Temple to gain access or house tigers again must be refused. They have shown themselves to be completely untrustworthy of having these critically endangered species within their grasp. It would be a tragic mistake and severe injustice to allow them [Tiger Temple and associates] to be anywhere near any animal, especially those used in traditional medicines or demand for fur and body parts, ever again.”
While it seems outrageous that people suspected of illegal tiger trafficking and possession could obtain more tigers, it is a possibility due to the separate business’s created by the Tiger Temple.
Foxcroft explained, “These “business’s” have been set up as separate entities, apart from the Tiger Temple itself. Therefore these “business’s” were not linked to Tiger Temple on paper or the circumstances surrounding it now. This is how they obtained a zoo licence in April 2016. However, if the committee of the new “business’s”can be proven to be linked to tiger trafficking, then the zoo licence will be revoked immediately. “
In January 2016, Cee4life, released “The Tiger Temple Report”, which was the culmination of a grueling nine year investigation into the Tiger Temple’s activities. The report contains abundant and shocking evidence of trafficking, clandestine operations and the removal of tigers, physical abuse, over-breeding and the evidence showing there should be 281 tigers from Tiger Temple, not 147. See report – http://www.cee4life.org/the-tiger-temple-report/
Part of the evidence contained within the report is the recorded conversations between the Abbot, the ex Tiger Temple Veterinarian and the ex Tiger Temple lawyer. One specific conversation, regarding the three missing tigers of December 2014, has the Abbot alluding to the fact that its his and Tiger Temples “policy” that outgoing tigers are not alive before being transported onward from the temple. But there is more evidence that the public has yet to hear.
Foxcroft states, “We have about 8+ hours of recordings and only partial critical evidence was released to the public. The full recordings contain some powerful evidence on the running of these business’s and how the profit would be handled. All of this evidence was given to the DNP in December 2015. It is very very useful, to say the least, for this case.”
“How this case is handled will set a precedent in Thailand for all other venues using tigers for tourism. There are very good people within the DNP and Royal Thai Police. Although this case is complex and controversial I believe that they will do their very best to ensure that justice is done.”
Cee4life also worked with National Geographic to expose illegal activities occurring within the Tiger Temple. See exclusive report – http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/01/160121-tiger-temple-thailand-trafficking-laos0/