Chinese man has pet lion confiscated in Cambodia

PHNOM PENH (AFP) – The Cambodian authorities on Sunday (June 27) confiscated a pet lion from a Chinese national after it was seen in TikTok videos being cuddled and bathed in a Phnom Penh villa.

The 18-month-old male, weighing 70kg, had been imported from overseas by the owner to be raised in his home, said Environment Ministry spokesman Neth Pheaktra.

“The Cambodian authorities (have been) investigating this lion since we saw it on TikTok in late April,” he said.

The owner had shared a photo on the app of the lion sitting in a driveway as a dog played nearby.

There was also a video of it as a young cub being sprayed down with a hose.

“People have no right to raise rare wildlife as pets,” Mr Pheaktra said.

The big cat was shown in photos – released on Sunday by the Environment Ministry – lounging with a small dog as the authorities prepared a crate to move it to the Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre in the capital.

The confiscation comes a day after a Twitter user posted an aerial shot of the creature roaming around a garden in the upscale Boeung Keng Kang district of Phnom Penh.


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