John Murwira in Chinhoyi
Three men appeared before a Chinhoyi magistrate on Tuesday for trying to sell a live pangolin.
The three accused are Knowledge Mazivanhanga (40) of 430 Hunyani Section in Chinhoyi, Rodney Simbarashe Sauti (29) of 757 Chikonohono and Charles Zvauya (29) of Glynamel Farm.
The charges emanate from contravening Section 45 of the Parks and Wildlife Act chapter 20:14 “keep, have in possession or sell or otherwise dispose of any live specially protected animal or the meat or trophy of such animals.”
Magistrate Methel Mabika remanded the trio to August 5for trial on $2 000 bail with reporting conditions.
It is the State’s case that on 26 July 2020, at Christos business centre in Chinhoyi the three accused persons, one or more or all of them kept, had in possession, or sold a live pangolin without a permit in contravention of the said Act.
On 25 Just, a team from ZimParks received a tip-off that there was a person who was looking for a buyer for a live pangolin.
Upon receiving that information, the officials teamed up with detectives from CID Minerals, Flora and Fauna Unit Chinhoyi set up a trap inorder to nail the accused.
One of the parks officials masqueraded as a prospective buyer and contacted the accused, agreed to meet at Christos Shopping Centre at 2200 hrs.
At around 3am the following day, Mazivanhanga and Sauti arrived aboard a Toyota Axio registration number AEV 9532 which was being driven by Mazivanhanga. They attempted to sell the pangolin, before the law enforcement agents identified themselves which led to their arrest.
Zimparks Senior Intelligence Officer Emmanuel Ncube valued the pangolin at US$5 000.
Tinoziva Chipupuri prosecuted.