Indonesia: alleged orangutan killers face the judge


What's the going rate for orangutan hit squads in Indonesian Borneo?

Roughly $110 per slain orangutan, according to this AFP account of accused orangutan killers on trial. Other monkeys fetched a $22 head price.

The men were allegedly paid to exterminate the rare beasts by a palm oil plantation owner sick of monkeys and apes destroying his crops.

This, according to a prosecutor quoted in the AFP report, is how you catch and kill an orangutan:

The hunters used a "4.5-millimetre calibre airsoft gun to shoot the orangutans out of trees before their six hunting dogs chased them … they would then hit the orangutans afterwards with rocks or wooden sticks before tying them up with rope to take photographs as evidence."

Only 60,000 orangutans still exist in the wild, though that number is steadily declining as their habitat dwindles.

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