Gunmen Steal Bird’s Nests in Aceh

Banda Aceh, TAG. Police in Aceh are still hunting five gunmen who managed to make off with 130 kilograms of swallows’ nests valued at nearly Rp 400 million ($45,000), the local police chief said on Sunday.
Used in bird’s nest soup and traditional medicine, swallows’ nests can sell for as much as Rp 10 million per kilogram in many parts of the country.
Aceh Jaya Police precinct chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Galih Sayudo said that a team of his officers had been dispatched to comb Aceh Jaya district in the hunt for the five men who are believed to be armed with assault rifles and revolvers.
“We have not identified any of them as they were wearing full face masks and the incident happened at night. We are intensifying our operations,” Galih said.
The armed robbers lay in wait for 13 workers in the Alue Meuraksa village of Kreung Teunom subdistrict on Friday, Galoh said.
The workers had just arrived on two boats and were carrying five sacks of nests with them that they had just brought down from the Lhok Meuligoe Caves.
Police said the workers were ambushed by two masked gunmen who fired three warning shots shortly after the workers arrived at the village.
Three other gunmen were reportedly hiding in the bushes, Galih said.
“Two workers managed to jump into the river [in order to save themselves] while the remaining 11 had their hands bound by the robbers.
“[The workers] were told to head back to the caves after the robbers took the entire Rp 390 million worth of birds’ nests.”
The two workers who escaped reported the incident to the police.
At the scene, officers found two bullet casings and a tent allegedly used by the robbers, but the perpetrators themselves had disappeared into the forest.
Police did, however, find the 11 workers safe and sound.
“We are sure that the robbers studied the location days before the ambush,” the police chief said, adding that detectives were questioning the workers thoroughly.
“We are conducting an in-depth investigation of this case because it has unsettled the public,” Galih said.[]
Gunmen Steal Bird’s Nests in Aceh Gunmen Steal Bird’s Nests in Aceh Reviewed by Nurdin Hasan on October 10, 2010 Rating: 5

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