Poachers convicted of hunting in KNP

2015-07-07 19:03
Holland .375 rifle

Holland .375 rifle

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Mbombela - Three poachers who claimed they were framed, have been found guilty of illegally hunting in the Kruger National Park.

Sifiso Lephoko, 32, David Mawelele, 36, and Daniel Dlamini, 35, all from Matsulu outside Mbombela, were convicted when they appeared in the Nelspruit Regional Court on Tuesday.

The three were arrested on November 15 2009, after they were seen shooting at three rhinos in the Kruger.

They had pleaded not guilty to trespassing, carrying out a restricted activity in the Kruger National Park and possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition.

A hunting rifle, three rounds of live ammunition, an axe, a butcher knife and a bag with a protected plant were confiscated during their arrest.

Magistrate Nomaswazi Shabangu said although no rhino horn or carcass was found to link them to rhino poaching, evidence by five rangers proved beyond reasonable doubt they were guilty of illegal hunting.

She dismissed their claims that they were given access to the park by a person identified as Costa Magongo, who they said worked in the park.

“You were well aware you were trespassing. You were well aware that accused one carried a rifle. He first testified it was given to him by Magongo and later changed the statement, saying it was planted on him by the rangers,” Magistrate Shabangu continued.

Magistrate Shabangu found Lephoko guilty on one count of trespassing in the Kruger, five counts of carrying out a restricted activity in the Kruger and one count of possession of an illegal firearm and possession of ammunition.

Mawelele and Dlamini were each convicted on one count of trespassing and five counts of carrying out a restricted activity in the Kruger.

State prosecutor Isbet Erwee asked the court to postpone the case to allow her to prove to the court that Mawelele has a previous conviction on similar charges.

The case was postponed to July 14 for the records to be presented in court. 
Read more on:    sanparks  |  mbombela  |  conservation

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.