Alleged rhino horn traders walk free

2013-05-01 17:08

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Johannesburg - The case against two Vietnamese men accused of smuggling rhino horn was thrown out of the Khayelitsha Regional Court after government failed to provide interpreters, the Star reported on Wednesday.

According to the paper, the two men had been in police custody since their arrest in 2010 and their case had been repeatedly postponed.

They had not yet pleaded.

On Monday, Victor Knoop from the department of justice told the court that one of the interpreters they had found was not registered on the department's supplier database which meant he could not be paid.

Another had problems with his tax certificate and could not be registered on the database.

In addition, computers have been offline since 1 April, meaning the department could not issue any purchasing orders.

The two accused were travelling on a bus bound for Cape Town in November 2010 when police stopped and searched the vehicle.

A dozen rhino horns including one so big it had to be cut in half to be hidden, was found in their luggage.

According to The Star, this was the biggest single haul of illegal rhino horns in the Western Cape.

- SAPA
Read more on:    cape town  |  vietnam  |  rhino poaching
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