YouTuber Arrested After Eating Bat Soup in Viral Video
A woman in Thailand was arrested after filming herself eating a bowl of bat soup for a YouTube video.
The woman, Phonchanok Srisunaklua, uploaded the video to her YouTube channel Gin Zap Bep Nua Nua, which roughly translates to "eat spicy and delicious" in English.
The video, which has since been removed from her channel, reportedly showed Srisunaklua eating a bowl of soup containing several Lesser Asiatic yellow bats, a protected species.
According to Complex, at one point in the clip she picked up one of the the bats and pulled part of its wing off before eating it, describing the bones as "soft" and likening the texture to raw meat.
According to Complex, she told viewers it was her first time eating bat and that she purchased the protected species near the Laos-Thailand border.
Pattaraphon Manee-on, who works at Thailand's Department of National Parks, told The Daily Mail that he was "shocked" by the video, as eating bat can present dangerous health risks.
"Because the incident should not happen both in Thailand and around the world, it is very risky behavior, especially as bats have a lot of pathogens," he said. "There is no proof that the hot water temperature will actually kill the germs. Just touching the saliva, blood and the skin is considered a risk. Besides the concern about the disease in bats, this woman could be guilty of breaking the Preservation and Protection and Wildlife Act, B.E. 2019, because bats are protected animals."
Srisunaklua was arrested for possession of protected wildlife carcasses and violating Thailand's Computer-Related Crime Act of 2007.
Srisunaklua is currently facing a jail sentence of five years and a fine up to $13,800, according to TMZ.