ERO New York City arrests Malaysian felon convicted of conspiracy to commit wildlife trafficking

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NEW YORK — Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) New York City arrested Teo Boon Ching Oct. 6. Ching, a 58-year-old citizen of Malaysia, was convicted of conspiracy to commit wildlife trafficking.

On Sept. 19, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) convicted Ching of conspiracy to commit wildlife trafficking. In the instant criminal proceeding, SDNY sentenced him to 18 months of imprisonment and ordered his removal from the United States to Malaysia.

Ching was a member of a transnational criminal conspiracy engaged in the large-scale international trafficking and smuggling of rhinoceros horns to sell to foreign buyers. Ching conspired to transport, distribute, sell and smuggle approximately 73 kilograms of rhinoceros horns within the SDNY’s jurisdiction. He was previously sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control pursuant to Executive Order 13581, which authorizes the blocking of transnational criminal organizations’ property.

“Mr. Ching is a convicted felon whose unbridled greed led to the illicit trafficking of endangered species, which threatens natural resources and delicate ecosystems,” said ERO New York City Field Office Director Kenneth Genalo. “This is an atrocious crime and we are committed to effecting his removal from the United States at the earliest opportunity.”

Ching arrived in the United States on Oct. 7, 2022, at or near John F. Kennedy Airport. U.S. Customs and Border Protection paroled him into the United States, and he was turned over to the U.S. Marshals Service pending criminal proceedings.

As one of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) three operational directorates, ERO is the principal federal law enforcement authority in charge of domestic immigration enforcement. ERO’s mission is to protect the homeland through the arrest and removal of those who undermine the safety of U.S. communities and the integrity of U.S. immigration laws, and its primary areas of focus are interior enforcement operations, management of the agency’s detained and non-detained populations, and repatriation of noncitizens who have received final orders of removal. ERO’s workforce consists of more than 7,700 law enforcement and non-law enforcement support personnel across 25 domestic field offices and 208 locations nationwide, 30 overseas postings, and multiple temporary duty travel assignments along the border.

Members of the public can report crimes and suspicious activity by dialing 866-347-2423 or completing ICE’s online tip form.

Learn more about ERO New York City’s mission to preserve public safety on X, formerly known as Twitter, @ERONewYork.



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