Notorious wildlife criminal Sansar Chand is free again
October 2009: In a highly-disappointing decision, the Supreme Court of India by an order dated August 24, 2009, suspended the jail sentence of notorious wildlife criminal Sansar Chand. According to the Wildlife Protection Society of India, the SC ordered that he be 'enlarged on bail’ to the satisfaction of the trial court.
Chand has been responsible for an unbelievably high number of wildlife deaths, even allegedly admitting to selling 470 tiger skins and 2,130 leopard skins to just four clients from Nepal and Tibet. On April 29, 2004, the Ajmer Trial Court had found Chand guilty under the Wildlife (Protection) Act. He was sentenced to five years imprisonment, a judgment he challenged in the Rajasthan High Court but to no avail.
The SC ruling is surprising considering the fact that there is clear proof of his crime – a diary seized from his family in 2004 has records of the sale of 40 tiger skins and 400 leopard skins over just 11 months from October 2003 to September 2004 alone. He is also accused in several other cases that are pending in the trial courts.