Indonesian Villagers Cut Open Crocodile To Retrieve Corpse Of Eaten Fisherman
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GRAPHIC CONTENT WARNING: This article contains some grim photographs, including some of a crocodile being cut open. Proceed with caution.
Once alerted, rescue teams tried to find the 55-year-old man, who was called Syafri, and made the gruesome discovery of his severed leg the following morning before catching the croc in their trapping nets.
After they killed the animal by shooting it, they then cut open the crocodile's body to extract the remains of the man from its stomach.
When the police became involved, villagers from Teluk Lanus joined the effort to capture the reptile and retrieve the body.
Syafri's friend Toha, who witnessed the attack, managed to scramble to safety at the top of the river banks straight after the crocodile took Syafri.
While the man's death is a tragedy, Heru Sutmantoro, the head of the Riau province's Natural Resources Conservation Agency, criticised the villagers' actions in killing the protected animal.
He also said that locals had received a warning in June 2019, telling them not to go fishing in the crocodile-infested areas of swampland near to the delta.
It's not known if Syafri had this information when he went on his fishing trip. However, there have been other attacks before this one.
Heru said: "We received the information that the attack happened on Sunday night,
"We have long warned the public to avoid saltwater crocodile habitat and be careful around that area.
"This was not the first attack, similar attacks have happened before around the Lakar River.
"The victim probably did not know the area was a habitat for saltwater crocodiles."
Heru went on to say that wildlife officials in the area are powerless to take action against the villagers, who dragged the crocodile up a dirt track whilst chanting, before cutting it open.
He also said that patrols around the area would increase to attempt to track the habitat of these obviously dangerous animals.
Heru continued: "Saltwater crocodiles are among the wild animals protected by the law. It is the authority of the Police or the Environment and Forest Ministry's law enforcement centre."