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4 tigers found caged at house; link to troubled temple probed

Jun 08. 2016
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By Supoj Kaewkasee
The Nation

FOUR TIGERS have been found in a house that had alleged links with the Tiger Temple’s shady activities. The house, located in a 9-rai (1.44-hectare) plot, had six cages and four tigers.

Animal keepers Taweep Bualoy and Chanchai Longloy claimed yesterday that the big cats had been raised at this house for more than a decade. 

Crime Suppression Division deputy commander Pol Colonel Montri Pancharoen said: “We received a tip that this house served as a transit point for illegal trade in tigers. It was also reportedly where tigers were being butchered.” 
He added the ongoing investigation also suggested that this house was linked to the scandal-hit Tiger Temple in Kanchanaburi province. 
Since last month, the temple has lost any reputation it might once have had as a tiger sanctuary. When officials raided the temple, they uncovered many shocking things, including tiger pelts, tiger-pelt amulets, pickled tiger cubs and stickers advertising tiger products. 
All 147 tigers have been moved out of the temple, which is officially known as Wat Pa Luangta Maha Bua Yannasampanno. Most of the tigers were moved between late last month and yesterday. 
Montri said relevant official will conduct DNA tests on the four tigers found in the house to see if they might be linked to the tigers rescued from the temple. 
“Last year, three tigers went missing from the monastery. We will also check that point,” he said. 
Separately, the Agricultural Land Reform Office yesterday put up a board in front of the Tiger Temple banning entry. The temple was found to have encroached on the office’s land. 

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