TicoTimes Costa Rican police officer Raúl Rivera was helping at a routine police checkpoint late Wednesday night in the Caribbean port city of Limón when his unit was suddenly fired upon by occupants of an approaching vehicle. “We saw the car approaching and were about to stop it for an inspection when suddenly they [the occupants] began shooting at us,” Rivera said. Police pursued the vehicle, and after several kilometers, managed to pull it over to the side of the road. One suspect fled the scene. Another man with the last name Dower was taken into custody. When Rivera searched the car, he was shocked at what he found in the trunk. “[Police] found an enormous leatherback sea turtle in the trunk,” a press release from the Public Security Ministry stated. “It was alive and flapping its fins as if asking for help.” Police believe the men planned to sell the kidnapped endangered turtle for meat. Weighing up to 2,000 pounds, leatherback turtles are the largest species of sea turtles. The creatures nest on Costa Rica’s Caribbean beaches from February to July and are often poached for their meat and eggs. Happily, the Costa Rican Coast Guard released the turtle back into the ocean following the incident, and Rivera ended his shift early in the morning, a job well-done.
I never thought that I would see a sea turtle on the trunk of a car, but Costa Rican poachers decided to grab a live leatherback off the beach, which resulted in a high speed chase and a shootout with police. Doesn’t that seen like a little bit of an overreaction to having a live sea turtle in your trunk? Couldn’t these poachers have just released the turtle back into the ocean and paid a small fine? A live sea turtle in your trunk does not seem to be worth opening fire on police on this blogger’s opinion.
I was disappointed to see that this series of events took place in Costa Rica, because I was just in Costa Rica this spring, and I absolutely love it there. Costa Rica is paradise, the people could not be any nicer, and I never once felt like I was in any danger (as opposed to Mexico, Argentina, Brazil). SportSmasher.com vacation tip – Go to Costa Rica. Just don’t hijack any sea turtles.