Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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Zimbabwe arrests 10 for rhino, elephant poaching

Zimbabwe arrests 10 for rhino, elephant poaching

HARARE, ZIMBABWE – Jul 22 2011 12:44

Authorities in Zimbabwe have arrested 10 people for poaching and unlawful 
possession of elephant tusks and rhino horns that they were suspected of 
selling to buyers from China, police said Friday.

The suspects, including four former soldiers and four farmers, were arrested 
in two separate operations and were apparently targetting Chinese buyers.

“I can confirm the arrests but I can’t comment further,” said national 
police spokesperson Oliver Mandipaka.

In the first operation, six suspects were found with two fresh rhino horns 
weighing 4.6kg when they fell into a police trap at a local shopping mall, 
according to the state-owned Herald newspaper.

The horns were valued at $120 000 by the national wildlife authorities.

The other group was arrested while trying to sell four elephant tusks in the 
capital, the paper said, adding that both groups had approached a Chinese 
businessman trying to sell him the horns.

Poaching for rhino horns and elephant tusks is a major problem in Zimbabwe, 
where wildlife management deteriorated during the country’s decade-long 
economic crisis.

Conservation groups have built protective pens for the targetted black 
rhino, with only a few hundred remaining in the country.

Parks authorities say poachers have killed at least 10 rhinos since the 
beginning of the year. — AFP


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