TWO men were arrested at Katima Mulilo in the Zambezi region on Wednesday after they were found in possession of four elephant tusks.
These arrests come after another suspected poacher was arrested on Monday night after being found in possession of a crocodile skin in Kongola area of the Zambezi region.
Zambezi regional crime investigations coordinator, deputy commissioner Evans Simasiku confirmed the arrest of the two men to the media. According to Simasiku, the police received a tip-off from a community member and have since been monitoring the suspects until the arrest.
One of the suspects works for the ministry of education and used the ministry's vehicle to transport the tusks.
"While the officers were following them the driver noticed and drove off, so they chased after them. The officers later gave up as they could not catch up with them due to the poor roads. However, after sometime when they thought the police officers gave up, they came back to town and that is when the government employee took the elephant [tusks] from the government vehicle and put them in his private car. He then went to the fueling station to refill his car and continue with the transaction which was interrupted. Little did he know that the officers were still on his tail," Simasiku said.
He further noted that the police intercepted the suspect at the fueling station and searched his car, and found bags filled with sliced pieces of elephant tusks.
The second suspect was arrested at another place since they separated when they reached the town.
The suspects are charged with contravention of Act number eight of 2003 of the Anti-corruption, possession and dealing in controlled wildlife products and defeating the course of justice. They are expected to appear in the Katima Mulilo Magistrate's Court on Thursday.