Man jailed 6 weeks for illegal import of birds and animal cruelty

Two magpie robins were concealed inside 25-year-old Loly Herianto Tampubolon’s bag on July 23, 2018. The birds were seized and placed under the care of Jurong Bird Park.
Two magpie robins were concealed inside 25-year-old Loly Herianto Tampubolon’s bag on July 23, 2018. The birds were seized and placed under the care of Jurong Bird Park.PHOTO: AVA

SINGAPORE - A 25-year-old man was sentenced to six weeks in jail on Wednesday (Aug 8), after he was caught attempting to smuggle two magpie robins into Singapore.

In a joint press statement on Wednesday, the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said Loly Herianto Tampubolon was sentenced to six weeks in jail by the court for illegal import of birds. In addition, he was also sentenced to six weeks in jail for causing unnecessary suffering to the birds.

Both sentences will run concurrently.

Officers from the ICA had stopped Loly for security checks at the Singapore Cruise Centre in HarbourFront on July 23, during which they found the two magpie robins hidden inside his bag.

Loly did not have an import licence from the AVA to bring in the birds.

"AVA found that the manner of transportation was unsuitable and had caused unnecessary suffering to the birds," said the authorities in the statement.

The birds were seized and handed over to Jurong Bird Park.

The authorities said that smuggled animals are of unknown health status and may introduce exotic diseases such as bird flu into the country.

Loly could have been jailed for up to 12 months, and fined up to $10,000 for his smuggling offence.