Rihanna Slow Loris Pic Leads to Two Arrests in Thailand

Authorities used singer's Instagram photo to track the protected animal.

Posted: 09/23/2013 08:09 AM EDT
Filed Under Music News, Rihanna

Rihanna's Thailand trip has authorities cracking down on how the nation is presented to tourists, reports the Phuket News. Two local men, aged 16 and 20, were arrested after the singer posted an Instagram selfie of her snuggled up with a slow loris while visiting Southeast Asia for her Diamond's World Tour.

The slow loris — a furry, big-eyed primate — is considered an endangered species.

"Look who was talkin dirty to me! #Thailand #nightlife," Bad gal Rih Rih wrote as a caption to the pic, which has been "liked" by over 231,000 Instagram users, but upset enough people that the Phuket Govenor ordered an "urgent investigation."

Apparently, local animal welfare groups have been working for some time now to keep such protected primates in the wild. Just last week was Loris Awareness Week; and raids in June of this year — prior to Rihanna's visit — led to several arrests of alleged illegal handlers.

"This is a big deal because it might affect Thailand's reputation," explained Awal Nithikul, the lead patrol officer and Senior Forest Academic at Khao Phra Taew Forest Preserve, who received the governor's order to investigate.

Rih's visit also sparked an investigation into the local illegal sex shows industry. After she posted tweets about a show that she saw, "The authorities and law officials have surveyed the area to arrest and fine those involved," a district chief, Veera Kerdsirimongkol told the Bangkok Post.

Rihanna was on vacation in Thailand before moving on to her next performance date, which was in Singapore. Her IG page has over 9 million followers and her Twitter has over 31 million. 

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(Photo: Instagram via Rihanna)

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