Kruger rangers arrest 7 poachers in 9 days

Posted on 10 January 2020

SANParks has announced that it has had an ‘encouraging start to the year’ with its anti-poaching campaign.

CEO Fundisile Mketeni has congratulated Kruger National Park rangers who have arrested seven poaching suspects in the first nine days of 2020.

According to a media alert, the first group of three were arrested in the Lower Sabie/Skukuza area on 2 January ‘after an extended daylong follow-up operation’ by rangers who supported by the K9 and air wing rapid reaction units.

In addition to the arrest, a heavy calibre hunting rifle, ammunition and poaching equipment were recovered.

Rhinos in Kruger. Image credit: Michael Heramb.

The second arrest took place on 7 January, in which another group of three suspects were arrested by a joint Stolznek and Pretoriuskop ranger team, who were also supported by the anti-poaching dog unit and airwing rapid reaction support.

This group were found in possession of a high calibre hunting rifle, ammunition and poaching equipment.

In the third incident on the 9th January, a group of suspected rhino poachers were arrested after a lengthy follow-up operation in the Tshokwane section of the park.

Mketeni urged communities to continue cooperating with authorities and giving information that can help win this campaign. ‘These criminals reside in our neighbouring villages and we urge our neighbours to help us save jobs and create opportunities through tourism because people come to the park to see these magnificent animals and if we lose them through the actions of these selfish individuals, we won’t be an attraction anymore.’

‘Congratulations to the entire SANParks team and we thank you for your dedication, obedience and tenacity and we wish you a successful 2020,’ concluded Mketeni.

Image: Louise Topping

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