Elephant Tusk Lands Karoi Villagers In Trouble

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By James Muonwa, Mashonaland West Correspondent 

TWO Karoi villagers have been dragged to court for illegal possession of an elephant tusk valued at US$1 467,10.

Whynos Dzotso (23) and Knowledge Nyamukondiwa (25) who both reside under Chief Kazangarare, Karoi Tuesday appeared before magistrate Felix Chauromwe facing charges of contravening the Parks and Wildlife Act, which relates to “unlawful possession of raw ivory.”

The pair which is denying the charge was remanded in custody to this Wednesday for continuation of trial.

The complainant in the matter is Christopher Mashingauta, a ZimParks intelligence security officer.

The state case, led by Gerald Dhamusi is that on 6 March this year, police detectives got a tip-off to the effect Dzotso and Nyamukondiwa were in possession of an elephant tusk at Washayanyika village, Chief Kazangarare in Karoi and were looking for a buyer.

The following day, the cops teamed up with ZimPark’s Mashingauta and proceeded to the village posing as prospective clients.

The court heard Dzotso, through his cellphone, was in constant touch with the cops and gave them directions leading to Kazangarare shopping centre where the deal was to be sealed.

Dzotso met the cops at a bush near the shops where he indicated his ivory was going for US$40 per kilogramme.

The detectives said they were interested in buying the ivory, prompting Dzotso to sneak into the nearby bushes to get the ivory.

He emerged with Nyamukondiwa who was helping him carry the contraband wrapped in a tobacco bale and loaded it into the car belonging to the investigation team.

The cops immediately identified themselves and demanded a permit from the duo but failed to produce valid documents allowing them to possess the ivory.

This led to their arrest and recovery of ivory weighing 8, 630kg valued at US$1 467, 10.