Three rhino poachers sentenced to 85 years imprisonment in SA.. Three poachers were sentenced to a cumulative 85 years imprisonment on charges relating to a rhino poaching incident at the Pilanesberg Game Reservice in the North West.
On 2 July 2018, the trio were trying to leave the game reserve in the North West in a white Ford bakkie loaded with stolen rhino horns valued at R1.5 million.
Their bail application was denied and they remained in police custody until the completion of the trial.
The Mogwase Regional Court handed over the hefty jail term to Arlendo Mhlanga, Adam Hlongwane and Inancio Chauke.
They had been charged with:
- Three counts of illegally killing three female rhinos,
- Possession of a prohibited firearm,
- Chopping six rhino horns from three rhino carcasses,
- Possession of ammunition,
- Intentionally and unlawfully conveying six rhino horns,
- Possession of six rhino horns,
- Theft of three rhino horns, and
- Entering the heritage site without written permission.
In addition to the above, the court also declared them unfit to possess firearms. The Ford bakkie and other items in their possession were also forfeited to the state.
Sentences to run concurrently: Spokesperson Henry Mamothame said the NPA welcomes the hefty sentence meted by the Mogwase Regional Court to the three poachers.
Mamothame said the court ordered their sentences to run concurrently, which “effectively mean the three will service a 35-year jail term”.
Mamothame adds: “We strongly believe this conviction will send a strong warning to illegal poachers whose aim is to destroy the population”.
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