Photo courtesy of Interpol

 

Last month, we told you about the arrest of Feisal Ali, who was featured on Interpol’s Infra Terra, a list of people wanted for environmental crimes.

Now, authorities have arrested another man on the list — Rajkumar Praja, an alleged member of a rhino poaching operation.

Here’s the update from Interpol:

Nepal’s top wildlife criminal nabbed in Malaysia

LYON, France – Nepal’s most wanted wildlife criminal and the subject of an Interpol Red Notice, has been arrested in Malaysia, according to Interpol officials.

Rajkumar Praja, the ringleader of a rhino poaching network in Nepal, is wanted to serve a 15-year sentence for rhino poaching and trading internationally in rhino horns. Nepali authorities requested a Red Notice, or international wanted persons alert, for the 31-year-old after he fled the country.

In 2013, Nepal Police, with the support of the Nepalese Army and the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation, arrested a network of more than a dozen poachers in suspected of killing some 19 rhinos in the Chitwan National Park, however Praja managed to escape.

Information exchanged between the Interpol National Central Bureaus in Nepal and Malaysia on the case and Praja’s possible whereabouts eventually resulted in his arrest by the Royal Malaysian Police in January 2015, where he was found in possession of a fraudulent passport issued under a false name. He has since been returned to Nepal.

Praja was a target of Interpol’s Operation Infra Terra in 2014. As Interpol’s first global fugitive operation focused on criminals wanted for environmental crimes, Infra Terra targeted 139 fugitives wanted by 36 member countries for illegal fishing, wildlife trafficking, illegal trade and disposal of waste, illegal logging and trading in illicit ivory and more.

Other high-profile targets of Operation Infra Terra who have been arrested as a result of the global operation include suspected illegal ivory trader Ben Simasiku, and Feisal Mohamed Ali, the alleged leader of an ivory smuggling ring.

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