Swiss Make Seizure Of Illegal Ivory

Customs officials at Zurich airport have seized 578 pounds of ivory that three Chinese men had dispatched from Tanzania, contraband that may have come from up to 50 elephants, Swiss authorities said Tuesday. The estimated black market value of the ivory is about $413,000.

Demand from China’s rising middle class has been fuelling elephant poaching in Africa and illegal trade in ivory, which is turned into jewellery and other decorative items.

A giant spotlight was cast on the growing problem of poaching and trophy hunting last week when an American hunter killed an African lion named Cecil, a well-known tourist attraction at a preserve in Zimbabwe.

ABC’s Tom Rivers joined us from London to discuss.