By Schalk Mouton
This is one of the latest ways of smuggling wildlife products from South Africa to countries such as China and Taiwan.
Tom Milliken, leader of the global elephant and rhino programme for Traffic, an international organisation that monitors illegal trading in wildlife, said yesterday South Africa was a key transit point on the ivory smuggling route.
On Friday a 58-year-old Chinese woman was arrested at OR Tambo International Airport carrying 40kg of ivory wrapped in tin foil, brown paper and clothes.
She was in transit from Mozambique to Hong Kong.
- Seven people were arrested in a "planned operation" at Hong Kong International Airport yesterday. About 160kg of tusks and worked ivory was found in the check-in baggage of 14 passengers.
One of them was sentenced to four months in prison. The rest were fined between $30000 and $80000 (R310000 to R828000) each.
The Chinese woman arrested in Johannesburg is expected to appear in the Kempton Park Magistrate's Court today.
Milliken said there was evidence that most of the ivory poached in the Caprivi Strip in Namibia and elsewhere in Southern Africa was being shipped through South Africa. More....