Breaking! 6 Members Of Alleged Poaching Ring Caught With Game Meat & Arrested For Killing Animals In A National Park In Rwanda

Six people were arrested on Tuesday in the Kayonza District of Rwanda in connection with the killing of a buffalo and two antelopes in the Akagera National Park.

Chief Inspector of Police (CIP) Theobard Kanamugire, the Police spokesperson for the Eastern region, said that the suspected poachers were arrested in a joint operation conducted in Rwabarema Village of Cyarubare Cell in Kabare Sector.

“Police received information from park rangers on October 21st, about a group of poachers that had entered into the park, but they were not able to locate them,” CIP Kanamugire said in a statement. “During the process of the operation conducted jointly with park rangers and other security organizations, we received information in the morning of October 23rd from members of the public that the group had already sneaked out of the park and was on its way to their destination.”

Kamnamugire explained that the authorities then trailed and intercepted three of the poachers, who were traveling on motorcycles with two sacks of the game meat.

The team also followed one of the suspected poachers to a home of another accomplice in Rwabarema Village, where they arrested three other members of this criminal ring.

“This is a ring of poachers; two of them are from Ngoma District while four others are from Kayonza,” said Kanamugire. “They have a way of faulting the electric fence to break into the park and reconnect it after crossing.”

As per Kanamugire, security personnel also returned to the park where the wild animals were slaughtered and smoked. There they recovered the head of the buffalo that was killed, weapons used, and about 20 nets the poachers were using to trap the animals.

Kanamugier praised the public that facilitated the arrest and called for continued information sharing on suspected poachers and to protect the conserved animals.

The law currently states that any person who hunts, sells, injures or kills a protected animal species and products made from them, commits an offence.

Upon conviction, the perpetrators are liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than five years and not more than seven years and a fine of between Rwf5 million and Rwf7 million.

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