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Hawks seize elephant tusks worth R400k at luxury KZN estate

18 November 2021 - 16:09
The Hawks arrested two people after elephant tusks were found at a residence in Zimbali. File photo.
The Hawks arrested two people after elephant tusks were found at a residence in Zimbali. File photo.
Image: SUPPLIED

Elephant tusks with an estimated street value of R400,000 have been seized from a residence at the upmarket Zimbali Eco Estate on the KwaZulu-Natal north coast.

Hawks spokesperson Capt Simphiwe Mhlongo said the bust took place on Tuesday.

Two men, aged 27 and 57, were arrested for possession and dealing in elephant tusks.

“It is alleged that members received information about suspects selling elephant tusks. An undercover operation was conducted at Zimbali Eco Estate, and members swooped in on the suspects’ residence,” said Mhlongo.

“Upon searching the premises, members found 1.3kg of ivory pieces, 14 warthog teeth, 19 pieces of sperm whale teeth, four ivory carvings, two hippo teeth, 47 ivory chopsticks and 15 elephant tusks with a street value of about R400,000.

“The two suspects were placed under arrest and charged accordingly.”

They were expected to appear in court on Wednesday next week.

The Zimbali Estate Management Association said in a notice to residents on Thursday it was aware that the Hawks “are investigating a case of alleged contraband violation and that some items could have been stored on a private property within the estate.

“We will not be commenting further on unfounded speculation which could hamper sensitive police enquiries,” the association said.

TimesLIVE


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