Police nabs nine suspected poachers

POLICE in Katavi Region have nabbed nine people suspected to be poachers for allegedly in illegal possession of 16 elephant tusks, homemade firearms and corpses of wild animals.

It was further revealed that the 16 pieces of ivories are equivalent to eight elephants.

Updating the journalists during media briefing, the Acting Katavi Regional Police Commander (RPC) Ms Kaster Ngonyani said the 16 pieces of ivories were hidden in a sulphate bags.

She further explained that the suspects were apprehended at different time and occasions in the region.

Ms Ngonyani named the suspects as Juma Malosa (47) from Katozi village, who was red handed, caught with ten pieces of elephant tusks, while scouting for prospective buyers.

Others on the list are three residents of Kabwe village along the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika in Nkasi District in Rukwa Region

She named them as Edes Maridadi (62), Silasi Maiko (19) and Julius Msumeno (73), who were nabbed at Karema Ward in Tanganyika District, Katavi Region with six pieces of jumbo tusks.

Ms Ngonyani went ahead to explain that five residents of Muze village along the Lake Rukwa Rift Valley Basin in Rukwa Region were caught in illegal possession of two homemade firearms and  remains of wild animals

She named them as Pius Mbalamwezi (50), Edward John (49), Godfrey Mwaka (35), Chrispin George (43) and Gerald Mashamba (45).

“They were apprehended in Katavi Region following a special operation conducted jointly with police officers and conservationists from Katavi National Park,” she explained.

On his side Acting Katavi National Park Chief Conservationist Francis Makaranja warned all those who are engaging in poaching activities to refrain from such criminal activities short of that they will face the wrath of law.

He went ahead to explain that all suspects who are still interrogated by officers will be arraigned into court once preliminary investigations of their case are completed.

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