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Police step up efforts against smugglers

Updated: 2014-10-27 01:31
By ZHANG YAN (China Daily)

Police step up efforts against smugglers

A suspect holds a pangolin after police stopped a vehicle carrying 39 of the animals in Fangchenggang, the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, in January. TANG RENYANG / FOR CHINA DAILY

Police in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region will crack down on illegal border crossings into Vietnam to halt the smuggling of drugs and trafficking of wild animals.

"We have boosted our efforts to tackle such cases and will reward those who provide tips," said a senior official from the Guangxi Frontier Inspection Department who declined to be named.

The official said that in many cities in Guangxi, such as Nanning and Liuzhou, frontier-inspection police have been conducting special operations that target criminals engaged in smuggling.

Meanwhile, border-frontier police are paying frequent visits to villages, train stations and ports to investigate suspicious people, and they have intensified supervision of private ships to prevent them from transporting criminals across the border, he said.

They have also deployed more officers in villages to prevent villagers from guiding criminals to Vietnam along footpaths, said Cui Min, news officer from the Liuzhou city frontier inspection department.

A number of Chinese citizens have recently crossed illegally into Vietnam by land and sea to engage in "smuggling drugs, trafficking wild animals, including pangolins and rhino horns, or precious woods to seek huge profits", the official said.

The number of such cases has increased sharply since January, he said.

In a typical case in October, two traffickers were convicted of transporting people over the border illegally and sentenced to three years in prison. Four Xinjiang suspects were accused of illegally crossing the border and sentenced to 11 months by Guangxi Dongxing City People's Court.

"Apart from initiating the special actions, police should widen the channels to collect clues," said Li Lin, a lawyer who specializes in criminal cases, from Beijing Lawyers Society.

In addition, police in China should increase law enforcement cooperation with counterparts in Vietnam in terms of intelligence sharing and joint operations, she added.


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