Man guilty of selling endangered elephant hair jewellery

A large quantity of gold jewellery containing endangered African elephant hair was seized from a Wembley shop

A large quantity of gold jewellery containing endangered African elephant hair was seized from a Wembley shop - Credit: Metropolitan Police

A Wembley shop trader has been convicted for selling gold jewellery containing endangered elephant hair. 

The Hertfordshire man, Maharaj Sivasundram, 40, of Malden Fields, Bushey, was found guilty on April 29 at Harrow Crown Court of seven counts of offering the sale of products containing specimens derived from endangered species.

A Met investigation revealed Sivasundram was illegally advertising and selling jewellery containing hair from African elephants at a shop in Wembley. 

Items on sale included rings and bangles. 

The trader was fined £8,400, required to pay costs of £3,500 and a surcharge of £170.

Enquiries into whether the establishment had ever legally imported elephant hair jewellery found no permits had ever been issued.

A baby bangle containing endangered elephant hair

Thousands of African Elephants are poached each year leading to the species becoming at risk of extinction - Credit: Metropolitan Police

A search warrant was carried out at the premises on May 15 in 2018 and a large quantity of gold jewellery containing black fibres was seized. 

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Forensic tests on samples of the jewellery detected DNA from African elephants.

Det Con Sarah Bailey, from the Met’s Wildlife Crime Unit, said: “We will continue to identify and prosecute those profiting in London from the illegal trade of endangered species from around the world.”