alexa Officials seize 64kg of illegal elephant tusks, 3 arrested - Daily Nation

Officials seize 64kg of illegal elephant tusks, 3 arrested

Wednesday October 17 2018

illegal ivory

The three suspects were arrested in Makutano, West Pokot on October 17, 2018. PHOTO | GERALD BWISA | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

GERALD BWISA
By GERALD BWISA
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A team of detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigation and the Kenya Wildlife Service on Wednesday arrested three suspects who were found in possession of six elephant tusks worth Sh6.4 million.

The officers acting on intelligence nabbed the three suspects at Makutano in Kapenguria, West Pokot as they boarded a matatu to Kitale.

Mr Adan Alio, the assistant director of Western Conservation Area, said the six pieces of tusks weighed 64 kilograms.

"This is as a result of the information our team was following up for the last three weeks. The three suspects are from West Pokot and Bungoma counties," Mr Alio told members of the press at KWS centre in Kipsongo in Saboti, Trans Nzoia county.

Mr Alio further said that the Western Conservation Area has three elephant population places. That's in Nasalot National Reserve in West Pokot County, Southern part of Turkana County and Mount Elgon in Trans Nzoia County. He added that the places had a total of 600 elephants.

"We suspect the tusks came from West Pokot region where we lost two elephants to poachers late last year," he explained. He also appealed to members of the public to always be vigilant and report similar cases to relevant authorities. The three are being held at the Kitale Police Station and will be taken to court tomorrow.

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Five months ago, three poachers were gunned down by the KWS security officers at Mt Elgon National Park. The officers were on routine patrol inside the park when they encountered five poachers suspected to have come from neighbouring Uganda, two whom were armed. An exchange of fire between the KWS team and the poachers led to the three being shot dead while two escaped.

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