North West official arrested for allegedly dealing in and transporting rhino horns

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A rhino horn  has been seized.
A rhino horn has been seized.
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The Hawks have arrested a North West Department of Economic Development, Environment, Conservation and Tourism official for allegedly transporting and dealing in rhino horns.

According to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the official and the owner of a security company were arrested on Thursday afternoon for allegedly contravening the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act and Rhino Norms and Standards as well as contravening permit conditions.

They allegedly transported 17 rhino horns from the Northern Cape to the North West in contravention of permit conditions issued by both provinces.

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"The men are also alleged to have been involved in the trade in rhino horns, using permits to cover up their illegal activities," department spokesperson Albi Modise said.

They were arrested by a multi-departmental team comprising members of the department's Green Scorpions, working in collaboration with the Hawks, economic development department and Northern Cape Department of Environment and Nature Conservation.

Their vehicle was also seized.

The official is due to appear in the Mmabatho Magistrate's Court on 11 October 2021.

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