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Tiger Poachers' Posing Cell Phone Photos Led to Arrest

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By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. on July 15, 2011 6:44 AM

Two tiger poachers have been arrested in Thailand. And part of the trail of evidence that led to their capture was a tiger poacher’s cell phone, which had images of the poachers posing with their unlucky catches.

The group of tiger poachers is believed to have killed around 10 tigers in the region, reports MSNBC. Two of the men were arrested, while a third member of the group escaped.

The seized cell phone, complete with incriminating photos, was taken after a gun fight between park rangers and the poachers in a protected wildlife area, MSNBC reports.

Sure, wild tigers may not be as cute and cuddly as their stuffed animal counterparts, but many tiger species are either endangered or critically endangered. There are about less than 3,200 wild tigers out in the jungles.

And, there's a growing international reason for tigers to be poached. In the past, tigers were poached for their fur. But now, many tigers are poached for their bones and other body parts, which may be used in traditional Chinese herbal medicine remedies.

The arrested tiger poachers are believed to be a part of an organized crime ring that the Wildlife Conservation Society, based in New York, has been helping to track down, reports MSNBC. The cell phone images also included pictures of the men with elephant tusks.

The cell phone images leads authorities to believe that maybe the men were also poaching elephants.

Oh, cell phones. Surely the two tiger poachers, arrested in part because of the cell phone images, probably meant to just take a memento of their "prize." In fact, one of the tiger poacher's cell phone pictures was a photo of a poacher on the back of a dead tiger, holding a gun. What gets more incriminating than that?

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