Police here on Saturday claimed to have busted an inter-state gang of poachers with the arrest of four persons from whose possession over 250 terrapin turtles were recovered.
According to SP, Purnea, Vishal Sharma, all the four poachers hail from Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh and were arrested at a toll plaza in Dagarua police station area here.
The accused were riding a pick-up van inside which 260 terrapin turtles – hidden inside a huge sack – were found, Sharma said.
He said police, along with forest department officials, were conducting search operations at the toll plaza following a tip-off that a gang of poachers was smuggling the turtles from West Bengal to Uttar Pradesh via Purnea.
The turtles are said to be rare and found primarily in the Brahmaputra river. They are often used in the manufacture of aphrodisiacs, the SP said.
All the four poachers have been booked under relevant sections of the IPC and the Wildlife Act and sent to jail, Sharma said.
On October 28, 77 terrapin turtles were seized from the same police station area of the district and four persons, including a woman, were arrested.