The Biodiversity, Cultural and National Heritage Protection Unit of the Sri Lanka Customs seized a shipment containing prohibited chanks (shells of a marine mollusc belong to the species Turbinella pyrum) while attempting to smuggle out to India on 15.06.2021.
The shipment (1 x 20’ full container load) had been declared to be containing 20,000 pieces of Chank shells exceeding the minimum diameter (70 mm) stipulated in the Chanks Fisheries Management and Export Regulations of No. 1298/1 of 2003 enacted under the Fisheries and Aquatic resources act No.2 of 1996. Exporter had submitted a valid Export License issued by the Director General of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources to the Customs in respect of the said shipment.
BCNP officers have examined the container at the Export Facilitation Centre and found 33,680 pieces of Chank shells in total. Out of that, 21,480 shells found to be less than 70 mm in diameter which is in contravention to the aforesaid regulation and therefore the possession, purchase, display, offer for sale, transportation or exportation is prohibited.
Further investigation into the matter is being carried out by the BCNP officers.