A man from Derby has been sentenced in connection with the illegal trade of ivory from endangered animals.
Ngie Law pleaded guilty to 18 different counts of buying, selling and possessing the ivory goods without a permit, and fraudulently evading duty, between 2011 and 2016.
It follows a lengthy investigation, which began in November 2016 after UK Border Force intercepted a package to China which contained ivory.
A search warrant was then carried out at the 44-year-old’s address on London Road, Derby, and officers discovered a large amount of ivory goods, which included a number of ornamental items and cutlery.
It is believed the ivory was mostly from elephants which had been killed by poachers between 1970 and 1990.
Further enquiries showed there had been transactions for online sales and purchases totalling more than £60,000 over that five-year period.
PC Emerson Buckingham of the Derbyshire Rural Crime Team led the investigation, alongside the National Wildlife Crime Unit and UK Border Force.
PC Buckingham said: “This has been a long and unusual investigation, but I am very grateful for the support I have had from the National Wildlife Crime Unit and UK Border Force which has helped us bring Ngie Law to justice.”
“It’s surprising to think that crimes involving endangered species have taken place in Derby, and we think the items discovered may be one of the biggest seizures of illegal ivory by police nationally.”
PC Buckingham added: “I hope this result will show that no matter how rare a crime is we are committed to fighting all types of rural and wildlife crime in Derbyshire.”
He was sentenced to a two-year jail sentence, suspended for two years, and a six-month curfew at Derby Crown Court on Wednesday 18 August.