Two people were arrested at OR Tambo International Airport after customs officials intercepted two bags with 10 rhino horns worth an estimated value of R4.99 million, the South African Revenue Services (Sars) said on Monday.
Spokesperson Sandile Memela said officials intercepted the horns weighing 24.96kg on Sunday.
“The discovery was made when customs officials followed up on a suspicious bag, which led to a second bag that was offloaded from the cargo hold of the plane bound for Turkey. The contents were scanned and on inspection found to be four full rhino horns in the one bag and six in the other,” Memela said.
“Two passengers and their bags were handed over to the South African Police Service for further investigation. Sars wishes to thank customs staff for their focus, discipline and hard work. We are very proud of the dedicated commitment of Sars customs staff in preventing illicit drugs and other goods from entering or leaving our country.”
Memela said Sars would continue to work with all stakeholders at the ports of entry, to protect the country and its citizens by disrupting organised crime and reducing illicit trade activities.
The two are expected to appear in court soon.