Thailand is a hub for animal smuggling

photo from Bangkok Post
The latest news regarding this was the snakes on a plane - an Iranian Man has been detained after 50+ snakes were allegedly found in socks in his suitcase - but the Iranian man declares that he bought them legally at Chatuchak Market (I knew there were strange things there but I have never seen snakes).

Then I read in the Bangkok Post
Thailand remains a hub for illegal exports of protected animals, as smugglers develop smarter methods 
to avoid detection by authorities, and wildlife officials say the law acts fails to act as a tough enough deterrent

Not sure that snakes in socks is 'intelligent' but...

I was not aware that the Pangolin is a species which is most at risk by the smuggling because of their meat is a delicacy and their scales are an ingredient in Chinese Traditional Medicine.
Customs officials at Hat Yai airport in 2009 confiscated as many as 
1,134 water monitors and 169 pangolins on one flight.
I was not aware that this was such an enormous problem in Thailand - I will liaise with my friend John Gray (an ardent environmentalist) for his personal opinion and post it 
on his personal blog.

BUT the next time I see someone struggle with their bag at Suvarnabhumi I
 am not going to help - especially if socks are falling out of a bag!

UPDATE (21/7/11) - Thai people caught smuggling