Ivory Smuggler Appears in Court

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By Mungu Mutimani

WINDHOEK

An Intercape bus driver who was arrested on Sunday evening in connection with 13 elephant tusks worth N$2 million appeared in Katima Mulilo Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday before magistrate Rachel Sakala and prosecutor E. Jafet.

The ivory contraband that is said to weigh 200 kg was found in a suitcase and three boxes that were loaded in the Intercape bus that was travelling from Zambia to Namibia.

The bus driver, identified as Randy Juveld Rijinald, a 40-year-old Namibian, was arrested at the checkpoint at Kongola after law enforcement officials were tipped off.

Two other suspects implicated in the crime were arrested at Okahandja on Monday morning when they wanted to collect their luggage containing pieces of elephant tusks.

Rijinald is charged with contravening Section 21 (A) sections 1,3,4 and 5 of Proclamation AG43 of 1980, and being in possession of protected game products.

The principal legal clerk at Katima Mulilo Magistrate Court said the case was postponed to April 01 2008 for further police investigation.

He said no other people have been arrested in this case so far. Rijinald was granted bail of N$500.

Passenger transport company Intercape maintain they have nothing to do with the case, but they will be waiting for the police investigation to be finalised before taking any action, if any, against the driver.

Okahandja police could not comment on the arrest of the other two unidentified women and man who were arrested Monday morning at Okahandja.

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