Alleged poachers in court

Phalaborwa - Five men accused of rhino poaching appeared in the Phalaborwa Magistrate's Court on Thursday, Limpopo police said.

Morris Sithole, Manuel Shitlhangu, Matthews Mathebula, from Giyani, and Santos Manyisi and Sergio Chauke, from Mozambique, would be back in court on March 5, said Brigadier Hangwane Mulaudzi.

Poaching has become a serious threat to South Africa's remaining rhino population. File photo: Jennifer Bruce. Credit: Independent Newspapers

The men, who are aged between 40 and 47, were arrested on Tuesday, apparently while on their way to the Kruger National Park.

Police confiscated a 1.4 calibre hunting rifle and silencer, eight pieces of live ammunition, a butcher's knife and an axe.

The men face charges of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition, and charges under the National Environment Biodiversity Act. - Sapa