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Two poachers gunned down in Meru as Chinese smugglers nabbed in Nairobi
Date Published: 31 Jan, 2013
NAIROBI, KENYA (January 30, 2013) Two suspected poachers have been gunned down in Lower Imenti, Meru County, while three Chinese nationals have been arrested smuggling ivory at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi County by Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) rangers on Tuesday (January 29, 2013).
In the Meru incident, a G3 rifle, five rounds of ammunition and assorted crude weapons were recovered. Two pieces of ivory were also found intact on the elephant carcass. The carcass had arrow wounds.
It is believed that the suspects had earlier shot the elephant with poisoned arrows and were out to recover ivory in the dense Lower Imenti forest. It is then that the rangers encountered the suspects and a shoot-out ensued. No KWS ranger was injured in the late evening incident.
Police from Meru has visited the scene of crime and are helping with further investigations.
In Nairobi County, three Chinese nationals were arrested while on transit from Yaounde, Cameroon, to Guangzhou, China, aboard a Kenya Airways flight KQ527. They were scheduled to board a departure flight KQ886 to Guangzhou, China late evening. They were however detected and seized by a joint security team comprising of the Kenya Airports Police Unit, Customs officials, Kenya Airways officials and the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) officials.
The three, Baolini Li, Yang Congoi and Yu Lizhone are set to be arraigned at a Makadara Law Court in Nairobi on Wednesday (January 30, 2013) afternoon to answer to charges of ivory smuggling through Kenyan territory. They were found smuggling eight pieces of worked ivory, 10 chopsticks, 15 wallets made of python and cobra skins and four bungles all weighing 1kgs.
Earlier Tuesday (January 29, 2013), three Chinese nationals pleaded guilty to ivory smuggling charges at a Makadara Law Court and fined Sh30, 000 each. They had been arrested at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) while on transit from Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo to Guangzhou, China, aboard a Kenya Airways flight KQ886 on Sunday (January 27, 2013). The court also ordered they forfeit to the state assorted pieces of ivory products comprising of five pendants, 23 bangles, a pen holder, 28 beaded bungles, 40 chopsticks, six necklaces, five pieces of worked ivory and two pieces raw ivory weighing 9.6kgs.
Elsewhere, investigations are underway into a poaching incident in Lake Nakuru National Park following the discovery of two rhino carcasses on Monday (January 28, 2013). Preliminary investigation has revealed that the rhinos could have been shot with a firearm as investigators have discovered a spent ammunition cartridge near the scene of the incident. All horns have been confirmed missing.