Limpopo police have positively identified the man who was mauled to death by a pride of lions on a private game reserve near Hoedspruit over the weekend.
Provincial police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said 50-year-old David Baloyi was identified by his sister-in-law after he was mauled to death by lions.
"The incident happened [last Friday night] when it is believed that three suspected illegal poachers were attacked by a group of lions and during that incident; the deceased was killed and eaten by these lions," Ngoepe said.
He said the other two men managed to escape and fled back to Mozambique.
"They then reported the ordeal to the family [of the deceased]," Ngoepe said.
He said Baloyi was positively identified by his sister-in-law at the Maphutha Malatji Hospital Mortuary in Namakgale outside Phalaborwa on Tuesday.
"The [sister-in-law] alleged that she received a call from her family members in Mozambique who gave her the report from the two men that the deceased was killed by lions in South Africa and she must go and check with the police," Ngoepe said.
"The police are still investigating the possibility that the deceased might have been a poacher after a hunting rifle and ammunition were found in the vicinity of the scene."
Ngoepe said police in Hoedspruit had opened an inquest docket for further investigations into the incident.