Woman imprisoned for possessing scheduled dried totoaba fish maws (with photo)

13 Apr 2023

A woman was sentenced to six months' imprisonment today (April 13) at the Kwun Tong Magistrates' Courts after an earlier conviction for possessing scheduled dried totoaba macdonaldi fish maws, in contravention of the Protection of Endangered Species of Animals and Plants Ordinance (PESO).

Hong Kong Customs inspected an air express parcel arriving in Hong Kong from Mexico at Hong Kong International Airport on March 3, 2022, and found about 1.2 kilograms of scheduled dried totoaba macdonaldi fish maws with an estimated market value of about $260,000. After a follow-up investigation, a 56-year-old woman in connection with the case was arrested.

Customs welcomes the sentence. The custodial sentence has imposed a considerable deterrent effect and reflects the seriousness of infringing offences related with endangered species.

Under the PESO, any person found guilty of importing, exporting or possessing of an endangered species without a licence is liable to a maximum fine of $10 million and imprisonment for 10 years.

Members of the public may report any suspected smuggling activities to Customs' 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (crimereport@customs.gov.hk).

Ends/Thursday, April 13, 2023

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