Case of accused Durban ivory traders postponed (South Africa)

Jan 31, 2020 | News

By Nushera Soodyal, East Coast Radio

Two men, charged with dealing in ivory in Durban’s Point area, are due back in court next week. Police say elephant tusks to the value of more than R300,000 were found in their possession on Sunday. “Police officers from the Point police station received information that the two men were in possession elephant tusks and a sting operation was set up.” 

“The suspects were contacted by police and an appointment was set up to meet yesterday outside a busy hotel in Point. A police officer from Point SAPS proceeded to the said location,” police spokesperson Jay Naicker says. Naicker says the undercover officer then asked to see the ivory horns. 

“Without hesitation, the suspects led the undercover police officer to their vehicle. The men were stunned, and they knew it was all over for them when they were confronted by police officers from the Point Rapid Response Team together with the Endangered Species Unit.”

“The vehicle was searched, and four elephant tusks were seized. The total weight of the tusks was 16,88kg. The two men aged 35 and 56 were arrested for possession and dealing in ivory,” he says. 

Police arrested 35-year-old Vusi Mhakona and 56-year-old Petro Mkhize who appeared in court on Monday. 

The case was postponed until next week for further investigation.
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