PETALING JAYA: Pihak berkuasa Malaysia sudah pasti 'panas punggung' dengan pendedahan filem penyiasatan terbaru mengenai kemunculan semula pedagang hidupan liar haram Anson Wong.
Menyamar sebagai pembeli yang berpotensi, penyampai 101 East Al Jazera, Steve Chao dan pasukannya menjalankan siasatan selama setahun membawa mereka ke Madagascar, Indonesia dan Malaysia sebelum mereka mengetahui mengenai rangkaian perniagaan Wong.
Menteri Sumber Asli dan Alam Sekitar, Datuk Seri G.Palanivel berkata kepada Chao beliau tidak mengetahui mengenai
Natural Resources and Environment Minister Datuk Seri G. Palanivel told Chao that he was unaware of Wong’s infamy.
“I do not know who this person is. I have never come across him. Only today was I told of this chap,” he said at the time of the interview.
However, he added that the ministry had done right in cancelling Wong’s business licences and permits.
He said that he would not know if Wong had resumed his activities as people could do things illegally without the ministry’s knowledge.
Asked whether he would go after top-level officials if they were suspected to be Wong’s accomplices, Palanivel said: “I won’t know, because sometimes things can go without my knowledge.”
However, he said he would look into it if anyone was found to be corrupt or accept bribes.
Chao and his team discovered an enclosure housing Serval cats from North Africa when they did a scouting trip to Wong’s Penang residence.
Posing as an interested buyer, he also visited Wong’s wife Cheah Bing Shee in her office where she told him: “We also import animals for sale, including skunks and other creatures.”
All licences and special permits issued to Wong and his wife allowing them to sell or possess wildlife were revoked in September 2010.
However, public records showed that they were allowed to renew several business permits, including for the Bukit Jambul Reptile Sanctuary and air cargo operator Aerofleet.
Chao also discovered Rona Wildlife, a company formed after Wong’s 2010 conviction.
Although it was registered under an unrecognised name, it had trading permits to export the same animals Wong did to the same customers in the United States previously.
Upon visiting the address, located on the upper floor of a shophouse in Penang, he found exotic wildlife such as albino pythons stashed there.
The worker confirmed that his boss was “Mr Wong. Anson Wong.”
When confronted about Rona Wildlife and asked whether he was still in the smuggling business, Wong said he had no comment beyond confirming that he had several companies.
When Chao told him that according to the Government, he was not supposed to be trading in wildlife, Wong responded, “Well, ask the Government.”