Two Indonesian men have been arrested for animal cruelty after they shot an orangutan multiple times and then decapitating it before tossing the corpse into a river. And their alibi for such violence against an animal? The pair told police they simply acted in self-defense.
<img src="https://media.8ch.net/file_store/a019872be7732c196a2ba0afeeb93223af9964533855a395e3f9b7c7bfba82a7.jpg" style="max-height:640px;max-width:360px;">
<span style="margin-top:15px;rgba(42,51,6,0.7);font-size:12px;">Credit: Orangutan Central Kalimantan Conservation Agency</span>
The suspects are rubber plantation workers on Borneo island. They admitted that they killed the critically-endangered male Bornean orangutan. The headless body of the animal was discovered last month by a local villager.
The animal’s hair was also burned off its body which was riddled with at least 17 bullet wounds.
Photos of the beheaded corpse floating by the riverbank went viral and triggered furious reactions from many sectors and individuals including animal rights activists.
Central Borneo police chief Anang Revandoko quoting the suspects said: “They claimed they killed the orangutan because they were scared to see such a big animal suddenly coming their way.” He added that the suspects claimed that the animal didn’t die in spite of them shooting it several times. The suspects also decapitated the orangutan from behind. Then they buried its head in the backyard of their house and dumped the animal’s body in the river.
The investigation is still ongoing. Investigators so far have seized a machete allegedly used to attack the animal.
The suspects whose names the authorities decided not to release yet are 32 and 41 years old respectively. If convicted, they could face up to five years in jail under the country’s conservation law.
Bornean and Sumatran orangutans are listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The Sumatran orangutan population is estimated to be just below 15,000 while the number of orangutans thought to be living in Borneo is estimated to be at 54,000. The jungle habitat of the endangered animal has been destroyed by rampant logging and the rapid expansion of palm oil plantations.