Perlemoen worth R6.5m discovered in Cape Town bust

2016-11-25 19:03

Cape Town - More than 35 000 perlemoen were found in a Caledon home in the Western Cape on Friday, the province's police said.

Nobody was at the house when the police arrived at the premises and found 35 891 units of the delicacy, worth around R6.5m, piled up or drying on racks, according to police spokesperson Andre Traut.

Perlemoen take years to get to the breeding stage and so are strictly protected, according to the website of the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town.

The picturesque seaside town of Hermanus in the Western Cape is home to many perlemoen farms, but poaching is also rife in communities where people struggle to make ends meet.

Syndicates and gangs are believed to form part of the smugglers' underworld that shifts the perlemoen from the fisherfolk to export destinations.

The haul of abalone that was found in Caledon. (SAPS)

Read more on:    crime  |  conservation

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