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Environmental authorities in the capital said the amount of fins meant that between 900 and 1,000 sharks measuring between 1 and 5 meters (3 to 16 feet) long would have to be killed.

In some countries, shark fins are sold as having beneficial effects on health.

The shipment – packaged in 10 packages and proceeds from illegal fishing – came from the municipality of Roldanillo in southwest Colombia, Bogota’s environment secretary said.

“It was the shipping company that initially alerted the environmental authorities and the police,” Secretary Carolina Urrutia said.

“Police are taking samples to find out exactly what species it is, but we do know that there are more than three species of sharks in Colombian waters.”

The national police will take charge of the investigation, she added, and asked the shipping company for all information on the sender and the final destination of the shipment.

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