House raid uncovers hidden rhino horns and cash in Mpumalanga
Six rhino horns have been seized and three people arrested during an intelligence-driven raid on a house in Mpumalanga.
“The horns are believed to be sets from three dead rhinos,” the Hawks said in a statement on Sunday.
The operation was carried out by serious organised crime investigation, detectives, crime intelligence, tactical response team, tracking team and the local criminal record centre.
“The team obtained a search and seizure warrant and descended on the suspects’ house at Clau-Clau Newscom in Pienaar. On arrival at the premises, an intensive search commenced and members located a number of hunting knives in one of the three vehicles that were parked inside the yard. They also uncovered a sizeable amount of money inside the house,” said spokesperson Brig Hangwani Mulaudzi.
A further search uncovered the six horns hidden inside a restroom.
Three suspects, two males and a female aged between 24 and 34, were detained. The vehicles, money and horns were also seized.
The suspects are expected to appear in the Kabokweni magistrate’s court on Tuesday on charges related to the illegal possession of rhino horns in terms of the National Environmental Management Biodiversity Act.
The investigation is continuing.
Hawks head Lt-Gen Godfrey Lebeya said they would “deal decisively with those who are involved in poaching these species”.