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Malaysians Come Up Empty Handed in Search for Man-eating Crocodile 'Bujang Bako'

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KUNCHING, Malaysia -- Efforts to catch a man-eater crocodile, nicknamed "Bujang Bako" by the residents here after it devoured a primary school boy last month, have been futile despite numerous attempts by crocodile hunters.

This morning a 3.35m-long crocodile was hauled up by a group of fishermen in Sungai Tupai at Kampung Bako, much to the delight of the residents that the elusive "Bujang Bako" was finally caught.

However, disappointment reigned when its stomach was empty, with no evidence that it was the same crocodile that gobbled Mohd Azuan Hatta on Sept 3.

The crocodile, with its four legs tied, was taken to the Bako National Park boat terminal after news of its capture spread like wild fire, prompting villagers from Kampung Bako and surrounding areas to gather at the terminal since early morning eager to see the animal.

Before that, water was pumped into the live crocodile's mouth, causing it to vomit out bones believe to be that of a dog and monkey.

Mohd Azuan's father, Hatta Abidin, 36, and mother, Maria Kepli, 34, who were among the crowd at the terminal, were not satisfied and a decision was made to dissect the crocodile's stomach to determine if it was the same crocodile that took away their son's life.

Sajali Abang, 56, who caught the crocodile with five fishermen friends, said he used a dog's carcass as the bait to catch it.

Sajali, better known as "Bujang Abong", who has the expertise to catch sharks, said nine hooks were pinned to the dog carcass bait to catch the crocodile.

Mohd Azuan, a standard six pupil of Sekolah Kebangsaan Kampung Bako was devoured by a crocodile while looking for crabs in Sungai Sarawak, about 300m from his house at Kampung Bako.

On Sept 13, a three-metre-long crocodile was found dead after eating the bait laid by a "crocodile bomoh", but after its stomach was dissected, it was not the same animal which gobbled Mohd Azuan.

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