Two men sentenced to lengthy prison terms after being busted with raw ivory


In a major crackdown on the illegal ivory trade, two men have been sentenced to lengthy prison terms for their involvement in possessing raw ivory in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

Hlupani Austin Sibanda, 60, and Ellmone Nkomo, 49, were convicted and sentenced by the Tredgold Magistrates’ Court for contravening the Parks and Wildlife Act. The incident occurred on April 11th, 2024, when the police received a tip-off that the two accused were attempting to sell raw ivory at the Entumbane High School turn-off.

Acting on the information, the police approached the accused persons, identified themselves and requested to search them leading to the recovery of two pieces of raw ivory. The accused persons failed to produce a permit authorizing them to be in possession of the ivory, leading to their arrest. The ivory weighed 21.75kg.

During the court proceedings, it was revealed that Sibanda was a repeat offender, and he was subsequently sentenced to 11 years in prison. Nkomo received a 9-year sentence for his involvement in the illegal ivory trade.

The successful operation and subsequent convictions highlight the collaborative efforts between law enforcement and the public in tackling this pressing issue. The authorities encourage citizens to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activities related to wildlife crime.

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