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Last Updated: Friday May 13 2011 10:12 GMT

Smuggled baby animals rescued in Thailand

A panther gets an injection
Rare animals like panthers are often kept as pets in the Middle East

Seven live rare baby animals have been seized by police at an airport in Thailand, after a man was trying smuggle them out of the country.

The man had four leopards, two monkeys, two panthers and one baby bear in his luggage when he was caught.

All the animals are under two-months-old and had been sedated with drugs.

The man, who was trying to get on a first class flight to Dubai, has been charged with smuggling endangered species out of Thailand.

A baby bear sleeps in a cage
The rescued baby bear sleeps in a cage

Undercover officers arrested the man as he waited for his flight, having followed him since he bought the animals illegally.

There are lots of instances of illegal smuggling of wildlife in Thailand, but they're often reptiles like tortoises snakes and lizards.

Finding this sort of mixture of mammals is unusual.