Rhino suspect appears in Tonga court

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Tonga - A man charged with the illegal possession of a rhino horn appeared in the Tonga Magistrate's Court in Mpumalanga on Friday.

Chico Mahlalela, 29, who lives in Hhoyi village near Komatipoort, but originally comes from Mozambique, was not asked to plead, a Sapa correspondent reported.

According to Mpumalanga police spokesman Brigadier Selvy Mohlala, Mahlalela was arrested during a police raid on Thursday.

“Police received a tip-off regarding a man who was in possession of a rhino horn at his house. Upon arrival at the house, police spotted two men and one fitting the description given to them,” said Mohlala.

“The man was carrying a bag. When he noticed the police he tried to flee (but) was apprehended.”

Police found the horn in the bag he was carrying.

Magistrate Sibonisiwe Sibuyi postponed the case to August 27 when Mahlalela was expected to apply for bail.


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