The power-hungry one percent have been known to use money to get away with crimes that less wealthy people are typically prosecuted for. This issue has been in the spotlight a lot lately in regards to trophy hunting, especially since Trump decided to allow the import of the remains of elephants and other endangered animals, a decision which has garnered speculation if Trump is trying to let his trophy hunting sons get away with what would otherwise be called poaching.
Along these lines, the wealthy CEO of the Ital-Thai Development Company, Premchai Karnasuta, and three of his associates, were recently caught after illegally camping in Thungyai Naresuan Wildlife Sanctuary, a UNESCO World Heritage forest. They were found with many rifles, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and the dead bodies of nine protected animals, including a female Indochinese leopard, an endangered species with fewer than 1,000 breeding pairs left.
Forensics revealed the leopard had been shot at close range eight times, died slowly, was skinned, and then had her flesh made into “panther soup,” which rangers found cooking in a pot.
People are concerned that this wealthy CEO will use his money and government connections to escape punishment for his blatant violations of the law, and reports say he has already bribed officials after being released on bail.
A petition has been set up on Care2 to let the public speak out on this matter and add pressure to authorities to prosecute Karnasuta and his associates as they would any other person caught committing the same crimes. As the petition’s author points out, a poor elderly couple was sentenced to 15 years in prison for picking mushrooms in the same forest, and if Karnasuta and his crew are convicted under the same laws, they would face 28 years behind bars.
Please take a moment to sign the petition demanding that Thai authorities look past the wealth and connections and see the crimes for what they really are.
Public pressure can create serious change, so make sure you share this with your network to increase awareness and support for this important cause!
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons