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Three Poachers Are Sentenced To A Combined 105 Years In Prison For Killing Three Rhinos In South Africa

South African National Parks (SANParks) announced that three rhino poachers have been sentenced to a total of 105 years in prison. Shangani Mathebula, Emmanuel Mdhluli, and Walter Hendrik Mangan were arrested in 2017 after killing three rhinos in the Marula section of Kruger National Park.

Mathebula and Mdhluli are from Mozambique, while Mangane is from South Africa. They were found guilty and sentenced for rhino poaching and other offenses by the Skukuza Regional Court prosecuting team on September 2nd.

While handing out the sentences, the magistrate explained in detail the manner in which the three poachers killed three rhinos execution-style. She requested that Mangane, who also had multiple cases which happened over 10 years ago in the KNP, was the oldest of the three poachers, at 58 years old. The other two poachers are 29 and 32 years old.

Reacting to the sentences, the Managing Executive of the KNP, Gareth Coleman, congratulated the Environmental Crime Investigative Unit and Ranger Services for working closely with the Investigating Officer and the other South African Police Service Units to bring solid evidence before the court. He commended the Prosecuting Team for a stellar job in fighting for a stiff sentence and thanked the Rangers, Air Services, and K9 Units for their swift reaction in apprehending the accused and ensuring that justice is served.

“These sentences should serve as a deterrent to those intending to come and kill our natural heritage and destroying the livelihoods of our people,” Coleman said in a statement. “We have in the past few months intensified our security efforts in the Park to good effect, but successful convictions require that the prosecutorial and justice pillars in our society are operating effectively.”

Members of the public can report wildlife and environmental crime in South Africa to 0800 205 005, or the SAPS number 10111.

You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg

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