Bust! Helpful cop discovers illegal cycads

2010-02-09 00:00

SEVEN accused appeared in the Richmond Magistrate’s Court yesterday in connection with the illegal harvesting of specially protected cycad plants.

Three giant cycads were allegedly found in a Toyota Venture near Thornville on December 16.

The Witness was told the Venture experienced mechanical problems and the occupants were stranded at the roadside.

By chance a policeman stopped to help them and discovered the cycads, which he recognised as a protected species.

The estimated value of the cycads is R270 000.

The accused are Mlungisi Sokela (33), Mphostoli Sokela (45), Mxolisi Khoza (33), Sandile Ntuli (18), Skumbuso Mthalane (33) and two youths aged 17 and 14 years.

The accused, who are from Sweetwaters, are on bail.

The case is likely to be transferred to the regional court for trial.

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