It’s a shocking image, but it only represents a fraction of the 200,000 shark fins seized Thursday by Ecuadorian police. They were about to be illegally exported to Asia.
The haul was uncovered in the port city of Manta, southwest of the capital Quito, and would have fetched up to $2 million had it reached its final market, reports the BBC.
Police raided nine locations and arrested six people, including a Chinese national, on charges of damaging wildlife.
The South American country’s Interior Minister José Serrano said authorities had “dealt a major blow to an international network that trafficked shark fins.”
The fins are often used to make shark-fin soup, considered a delicacy in most of China. But heavy demand from China’s increasingly affluent population, and brutal finning methods, have led to a decline in shark numbers and many countries have either outright banned finning or have heavily regulated the shark-fishing industry.
A tweet from what appeared to be Serrano’s Twitter account showed what looked like several photos of the grim haul, accompanied by a demand to put an end to criminal networks destroying the ecosystem.
- Workers Are Furious. Their Unions Are Scrambling to Catch Up
- What the Facebook Whistleblower Did to the Company's Stock in 6 Weeks
- Photos from Migrants' Desperate Journeys to the U.S. Border
- Emily Ratajkowski: How I Learned to Let Go
- Afghanistan's Female Students Were Banned from Studying. Now Some Are Finding New Ways to Learn
- The 'Safe Supply' Movement Aims to Curb Drug Deaths Linked to the Opioid Crisis
- The 19 Most Underrated Movies on Netflix
- By Ending Legacy Admissions, Amherst Hopes to Change the Makeup of Its Student Body