Police uncover six rhino horns in Mpumalanga home
Three suspects have been arrested after a house raid conducted by the Hawks in Mpumalanga.
Two men and a woman are in police custody, following an intelligence-driven raid of a house in Pienaar, Mpumalanga.
It had emerged that the three were allegedly dealing in rhino horn, prompting a joint operation by the Serious Organised Crime Investigation, Detectives, Crime Intelligence, Tactical Response Team, Tracking Team and the Local Criminal Record Centre.
Three nabbed for allegedly dealing in rhino horn
A raid commenced after the team obtained a search warrant, the raid commenced, where six rhino horns were uncovered as well as an undisclosed amount of cash.
“The team obtained a search and seizure warrant and descended on the suspects’ house at Clau-Clau Newscom in Pienaar. On arrival at the premises, an intensive search commenced and members located a number of hunting knives in one of the three vehicles that were parked inside the yard,” the South African Police Service (SAPS) said in a statement.
“They also uncovered a sizable amount of money inside the house.”The team proceeded with the search around the yard and found six rhino horns hidden inside the outside restroom. The horns are believed to be sets from three dead rhinos.”South African Police Service
War against poaching intensified
According to the statement, the horns are believed to be sets from three dead rhinos.
The arrests were welcomed by Hawks boss, Lieutenant General Lebeya.
“The DPCI shall continue to deal decisively with those who are involved in poaching these species. We shall be following the motive which is probably the making of an unexplained wealth with view to attaching same,” he said.Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya
The three suspects will appear before Kabokweni Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, charged with illegal possession of rhino horns in terms of the National Environmental Management Biodiversity Act.
The rhino horn trade has recently suffered a knock, with government’s intensified efforts against poaching.
A total of 594 rhino were poached in 2019, down from 769 rhino killed the previous year.