Indonesia says arrested Russian smuggled orangutan, lizards
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Indonesia says arrested Russian smuggled orangutan, lizards

Indonesian Natural Resources Conservation Center officers carry a two-year-old male orangutan in a cage during a press conference in Bali, Indonesia Monday, March 25, 2019. Indonesian authorities have arrested a Russian tourist who was attempting to smuggle a drugged orangutan out of the resort island of Bali, a conservation official said Sunday. Orangutans are listed as critically endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati)

DENPASAR, Indonesia — Indonesian police say they also found geckos and chameleons in the luggage of a Russian tourist who has been arrested for allegedly trying to smuggle a drugged orangutan out of Bali.

Andrei Zhestkov was arrested late Friday at Bali’s international airport after security officers found a 2-year-old endangered male orangutan sleeping in a rattan basket in his luggage.

Local police chief Ruddi Setiawan announced Monday that the suspect had fed the animal allergy pills mixed with milk, causing it to lose consciousness. He said authorities also found two geckos and four cameleons in his bags.

He said the suspect, who had planned to return to his home in Vladivostok, faces up to five years in jail and $7,000 in fines for attempting to smuggle wildlife if he is found guilty.

The Associated Press

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