PROVINCIAL COMMISSIONER APPRECIATES THE SENTENCING OF A POACHER
Nelspruit: 24 May 2022-The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has acknowledged with much appreciation, the effort made by various stakeholders in the justice system in dealing with poaching. The expression by the General follows a hefty sentence that was handed down by the Skukuza Regional Court on Friday, 20 May 2022 upon a poacher. Sam Khoza, aged 47 received a well-deserved sentence of 9 years imprisonment for poaching.
The accused was sentenced following an incident in which three armed intruders entered the Kruger National Park through the section on 11 November 2020 however, they were spotted by the field Ranger who was on duty that day. It is said that when the three men noticed the field rangers, a shooting ensued. Two of the suspects evaded the arrests but Khoza, who sustained some injuries during the shooting was captured.
The police at Skukuza was notified about the incident and upon their arrival, the accused was arrested and charged accordingly. During his arrest, he was found in possession of a rifle, some ammunition as well as a silencer.
After he recovered from his injuries, he was presented before Skukuza Regional Court, facing the charge of being in possession of a prohibited firearm, possession of illegal ammunition as well as possession of a dangerous weapon. The case was handed over to the Skukuza Stock Theft Unit, experts in the field of probing matters which are related to illegal poaching.
The team worked tirelessly to ensure that the accused got convicted and sentenced as a poacher. During the tour of their investigation, they discovered that the accused was born in the country of Mozambique and was in South Africa illegally hence the charge of contravention of the Immigration Act of South Africa was added against him.
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The team presented their case before the court, with overwhelming evidence which was indisputable and has then led the accused with no choice but to surrender hence on Friday, 20 May 2022, he pleaded guilty to all the charges. Khoza was therefore sentenced accordingly.
The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has further commended the collaborative effort displayed by the team of field rangers, the investigation team, the Prosecution Team, and the Judiciary which culminated in the sentencing of the accused. “We hope that this sentence will serve as a deterrence to those you might think of emulating the actions of the accused. We hope by now people have learnt that one can be severely punished for the unauthorized killing of wild animals” said the General.
Police urge anyone with any information on Crime to call the Crime Stop number at 08600 10111. Alternatively, members of the public can send information via MYSAPSAPP. All received information will be treated as confidential and callers may opt to remain anonymous