Mozambican dad and son remanded in custody for possessing rhino horns, shark fins
Pretoria - Two Mozambican nationals facing charges in South Africa over the possession of rhino horns and shark fins have lost their bid for bail and will stand trial in October, the Hawks, an elite unit of the South African Police Service, said.
The pair, which shares the same name, will return to court on October 28, Hawks provincial spokeswoman in Mpumalanga Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi said late on Tuesday.
“The father and son duo, Alberto Ernesto Nharreluga, aged 47, and Alberto Ernesto Nharreluga (Junior), aged 27) were arrested in April 2019 after being found in possession of two rhino horns and shark fins,” she said.
“The rhino horns and shark fins were found by members of [the South African Police Service] flying squad on the N4 next to Belfast, hidden inside their vehicle while the two were travelling from Mozambique to Gauteng.”
She said during the arrest, the pair tried to entice the police officers with kickbacks, without success.
“The serious corruption investigation [unit] members were alerted and they processed the crime scene and charged the suspects with possession of endangered species and an additional corruption charge,” said Sekgotodi.
Last week, the father and son attempted to apply for bail at the Middelburg regional court but their bid failed.
“Their trial on both alleged crimes, possession of endangered species and corruption, will kick off on 28 October this year in the Middelburg Regional Court while they are remanded in custody,” said Sekgotodi.
Software company ShotSpotter, which provides gunshot detection systems, last week said its technology had driven an almost 60 percent reduction in the number of rhinos killed by poachers for their horns at South Africa's Kruger National Park.
Since November 2018, ShotSpotter has been incrementally deployed across several areas of the park's Intensified Protection Zone specifically chosen due to the high density of rhino numbers.
African News Agency/ANA