A two-year old male orangutan, which a Russian citizen attempted to smuggle out of Indonesia, looks out of a cage after being confiscated, at the Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) office in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, March 23, 2019 in this photo taken by Antara Foto..
(photo credit: ANATRA FOTO / REUTERS)
A Russian tourist who attempted to smuggle a two-year-old orangutan out of Indonesia was arrested on Friday when airport security realized what was in his suitcase, Ynet reported.
The tourist claimed he wanted to take the great ape to Russia and keep him as a pet.
The Russian claimed that the orangutan, as well as other rare lizards he was attempting to smuggle, was bought by another Russian on the black market and he was asked to deliver them to Russia.
The Russian tourist now faces up to five years in prison as well as a 7,000 USD fine, as orangutans are an endangered species.
When adults, male orangutans reach a weight of up to 118 kilograms (260 pounds). In their native rainforest environment, they consume nearly 300 different types of fruit and other foods. They are highly intelligent and shape umbrellas and bed-rolls out of leaves.
Criminal hunters kill female orangutans and sell their cubs in the black market. However, the main cause for the animals facing extinction is human encroachment on their native forests.
A Russian couple recently made headlines when they adopted a puma and named him “Messi.”
Aleksandr and Maria Dmitriev from the city of Penza in western Russia have opened social media accounts for their puma. They claim he has many health problems and would not be able to survive in the wild.
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