Two suspected poachers from Mozambique pleaded guilty in the Nelspruit Regional Court on Friday to entering SA illegally, but denied poaching rhino.
According to a report on the News24 site, Andelino Mukwebe and Jeremano Tive face charges of entering the country illegally, entering the Kruger National Park without a valid permit and of killing a white rhino. KNP rangers arrested them in possession of two fresh white rhino horns and an axe in the N'wanesi section of the park on 19 January. 'I was on my way to the place of gold in Johannesburg to look for a job,' Mukwebe said in an affidavit. 'We know it is against the country's law to enter without a legal permit. I plead not guilty to entering the KNP illegally, killing a white rhino and dehorning a second white rhino,' he said. Tive presented a similar statement before magistrate Edward Hall. Defence lawyer Daniel Mabunda told the court that Mukwebe and Tive would testify that their bags held only food. 'It is my instruction that the two rhino horns the witness claims were found inside Tive's bag were brought by the rangers who came with the helicopter,' Mabunda said. Hall postponed the case to 28 November.