1 minute read
17 Sep 2014
2:57 pm

Big rhino poaching arrest soon – Hawks head

A suspected rhino poaching kingpin could be nabbed soon, Hawks head Anwa Dramat told MPs on Wednesday.

FILE PICTURE: Head of the Hawks General Anwa Dramat at the SAPS Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on April 18, 2012 in Cape Town, South Africa where each porfolio head presented their strategic plans and budget. (Photo by Gallo Images / Foto24 / Danielle Karallis)

“Shortly there would be some… significant achievement… on one of those who is higher up in the criminal value chain,” he hinted.

Briefing Parliament’s police portfolio committee, Dramat detailed the involvement of the Hawks in dealing with rhino poaching syndicates.

Dramat would not be drawn on the particulars of the case.

Those on the bottom rung of the syndicate ladder, such as poachers and drivers, would be targeted by police, while the Hawks were interested in catching those who benefited financially from rhino poaching.

“We would want to identify who is the person at the top of the value chain,” Dramat said.

The Hawks would use criteria such as monetary value, the extent of the rhino poaching threat, and public interest before choosing to pursue a case.

“The issue of the value is an important aspect to begin to differentiate between what is serious and what should be handled elsewhere within the police service,” Dramat said.

This year, more than 730 rhino have been killed for their horns by poachers in South Africa. In 2013, 1004 were poached.