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EXTRACT FROM THE FOLLOWING THIRD PARTY SOURCE: News24

Police in southern Zimbabwe have arrested three South Africans trying to smuggle 29 sables across the border, state media reported on Sunday.

© Paul Maritz
© Paul Maritz

The official Sunday Mail said the animals were worth US$348, 000 and were being transported in two trucks from a conservancy in Zimbabwe’s arid lowveld region allegedly towards an undesignated border crossing with South Africa.

They were arrested on Saturday when the trucks got stuck in mud near Beitbridge, the paper said.

“The South Africans had no capture and translocation permits and had no export permits for the sables. The only documentation they had was a movement permit issued by the department of veterinary services, Hwange office,” national parks spokesperson Caroline Washaya-Moyo told the Sunday Mail. Hwange is nearly 700km from Beitbridge.

The report named the three as Edwin Hewitt, aged 49, Hendricks Johannes Blignaut aged 41 and John Herbert Pretorius aged 49. They are due to appear in court this week.

South Africa’s international relations and co-operation department told News24 it was not aware of the situation.

They are alleged to have entered the country through the small Pandamatenga Border Post between Zimbabwe and Botswana. There were no other details.

There are few other recorded attempts of would-be game smuggling in recent years, though a South African businessman who repeatedly flouted border control regulations by flying his helicopter in and out of his ranch in southern Zimbabwe has regularly made the news.

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A collection of current affairs articles and press releases from third party sources.