A key wildlife trafficking suspect has been arrested by the Vietnamese Police after some frozen tiger carcasses were found in a car at the parking lot of a building on Xuan Thuy Street in Cau Giay District, Hanoi, on Tuesday.

The suspect identified as Nguyen Huu Hue was arrested alongside two others, and it is believed that he smuggled animals in from neighbouring Laos for years. Hue, director of a local service and commerce company, used his business as a front for the trafficking as he reportedly goes to Laos to buy tiger carcasses, freeze them before transporting to Vietnam.

“Hue set up a company… which sells building material as a cover for the illegal trading of tigers and wildlife,” Cong An Nhan Dan, the official mouthpiece of the Ministry of Public Security, reported.

Tiger bones are used in Vietnam to make traditional medicine to treat bone and joint-related ailments. Tigers are also bought for their meat, skin and claws in Vietnam. In recent times, the once-large population of the endangered cats in the country has dwindled dramatically. A 2016 report from the World Wildlife Fund, said Vietnam had five tigers in the wild, down from 30 in 2011.

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