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SANParks arrests two staff members for alleged poaching

Original Source: SANParks

South African National Parks (SANParks) said in a statement that in a SANParks driven operation, with support from South African Police Services (SAPS), two of its staff members based in the Kruger National Park were arrested during the late afternoon of Monday, 7 April 2014, on suspicion of poaching activity during the weekend.

According to SANParks’ Acting CEO, Abe Sibiya, the two employees are not attached to the ranger corp units within the park… “but are definitely employees of the organisation”.

The two suspects are expected to appear in the White River Magistrate Court on Wednesday, 9 April 2014.

Sibiya said the strategies being employed in the fight against rhino poaching are not only focused on external forces, but also within our own ranks. “We will not leave any stone unturned and this should send out a stern warning to those who are conspiring with poachers that we will deal with them decisively and swiftly.” The suspects are presumed innocent until they are convicted, but we are following very strong leads. “We are constantly on the alert and that is what led to the arrests of these two individuals,” added Sibiya.

He said the use of advanced technology now in place in the iconic park also led to the breakthrough in apprehending these alleged suspects. “This advanced technology made possible through funds donated by the public, various corporations and foundations is assisting in building the much needed intelligence in the fight against poaching.”

SANParks would like to commend our own colleagues in the ranger corps and ECI including the SAPS and SANDF who continue to take the fight to the intruders and killers of our heritage. “A lot of work is underway to stabilise the situation and we are confident that the collective interventions by all law-enforcement local and international agencies will eventually curb or reduce, if not stop, rhino poaching altogether,” Sibiya concluded.

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