Kruger Park Field Rangers Arrested By The Hawks.. Two field rangers have been arrested on charges related to fraud, money laundering and corruption.
The breakthrough comes as a result of ongoing investigations led by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations, known as the Hawks, with support from the Skukuza Stock Theft and Endangered Species Unit.
A statement released by SA National Parks (SANParks) said the arrests form part of an external investigation. No further details were available yet.
Kruger National Park (KNP) managing executive Gareth Coleman said it is unfortunate that some park employees are alleged to have been involved in illegal activities.
“We are proud of the teamwork and dedication of our rangers corps, our aviators, K9 units and Environmental Crime Investigation Unit, and our partners in other law enforcement agencies who execute their responsibilities in extremely difficult conditions,” said Coleman.
“As these arrests indicate, law enforcement agencies are closely monitoring our actions. When employees are exposed it has far reaching consequences for themselves, their families and their own communities,” he said.
“Only through discipline, honesty and teamwork, combined with the desire to serve the people of our country selflessly, will we be able to stem the tide of rhino poaching in KNP.”
Hawks spokesperson Warrant Officer Bonnie Nxumalo said: “The arrest follows a comprehensive investigation which included their financial affairs.
“It is alleged the suspects provided tactical information to rhino poaching syndicates in exchange for large sums of money.
“Further arrests cannot be ruled out since the investigation is ongoing.”
The two field rangers, aged 56 and 60, are due to appear in the Bushbuckridge magistrate’s court on Monday.