The Kruger National Park (KNP) conducted anti-poaching operations that led to the arrest of five suspected poachers in the Pretoriuskop section of the park over the weekend. The suspects were found in possession of ammunition, a silencer and two high calibre hunting rifles.
On Saturday (17 April), South African National Parks (SANParks) Rangers, supported by their air wing and K9 units, apprehended one suspected poacher and recovered poaching equipment including a rifle and an axe. The second suspect was fatally trampled by a herd of breeding elephants and the third managed to evade arrest.
“It has been a successful weekend in the fight to keep our rhinos alive in the park, we are delighted with our anti-poaching teams who were able to arrest suspects before any animal was killed. The actions are a morale booster for our anti-poaching teams and conservation efforts,” said Gareth Coleman, the managing executive of the KNP.
Yesterday (18 April), rangers detected an incursion on a routine patrol, and tracked the spoor until they made contact with a group of three suspected poachers. All three suspects were arrested and a high calibre hunting rifle, poaching equipment and ammunition were recovered. The rangers were supported by their air wing and K9 units during this operation as well.
“We hope the arrests send a strong message to poachers that we are determined to stop them in their tracks within the Park. SANParks is committed to work harder with law enforcement agencies and communities outside the Park to intensify efforts to crack the criminal syndicates driving these crimes,” concluded Coleman.