Critical US intelligence leads to capture and arrest of criminals dealing in live and dead pangolins
It is far easier to track a pangolin in the bush than tracking a criminal who catches them in the wild and sell them to oriental traffickers but this is exactly what happened recently. With the help of US law enforcement, the Namibian Police was able to track and capture four suspected pangolin poachers.
This week, the US Embassy in Windhoek said the four were arrested after the US Embassy in Pretoria got wind of a criminal deal in pangolins that was just about to happen. This information was relayed to the local embassy where officials immediately contacted the Namibian Police.
This crucial information at a critical juncture in the crime enabled Nampol’s Blue Rhino Task Team to set a trap and arrest four suspected criminals involved. A live pangolin was found, sadly together with the skins of four animals slaughtered earlier and some loose scales.
The suspected criminals are set to appear in court for a bail application on 13 August 2020. The live pangolin was released back into the wild last week but the dead pangolins are lost forever yet they are a stark reminder of the havoc organised crime in Asia is causing to African wildlife and to African economies.
A full report on the economic damage wildlife crime causes in Africa is available from the Illicit Financial Flows out of Africa database.