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Johannesburg - A Toyota Tazz with 20 sheep inside landed a Mpumalanga man behind bars in Ermelo on Monday, police said.
The man was caught by patrolling police between Lothair and Mpuluzi, said Colonel Leonard Hlathi.
“Police were busy with their routine patrol when they spotted a suspicious-looking Toyota Tazz.”
He said all passengers seats were removed and the vehicle was loaded with the livestock.
“The driver failed to produce any permit to transport the stock or proof of purchase on request.”
Sixteen of the sheep had died of suffocation when the police stopped the man.
Hlathi said the interrogations revealed that the sheep were stolen from a farm in Lothair.
The man would appear in the Ermelo Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.
Mpumalanga police chief Lt-Gen Thulani Ntobela said the man could be further charged with animal cruelty.
“Twenty sheep in a Toyota Tazz? How on earth can somebody do such a cruel act? This is quite strange and must be condemned in the strongest terms.”