Forest Department officials on Friday apprehended three persons on the charge of poaching tortoises at Palukunnu near Anjukunnu under the North Wayanad Forest division.
Aswin A. Prasad, 35, of Aswin Nivas; Raveendran, 56, and Jithin Kumar, 28, of Vakayad tribal settlement at Palukunnu were nabbed by forest range officers M. Padmanabhan and K.V. Biju following a tip-off to P. Dhaneshkumar, Deputy Forest Conservator (Vigilance), Kozhikode.
The accused had been gaenged in poaching Travancore Tortoise (Indotestudo Travancorica) for the past several years, Mr. Dhaneshkumar said. The tortoises that were hunted are listed in Schedule IV of the Wildlife Protection Act (1972), he added.
Officials also seized shells of tortoises and knives used for poaching them.
The arrested persons were produced in the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court at Mananthavady on Friday. The court remanded them in judicial custody for 14 days.