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Woman jailed 7 years for ivory theft

A Chipinge woman will live to rue the day she stumbled upon a dead elephant while herding cattle and taking its tusks home.

Ivory smuggling
Ivory smuggling

Juliet Simango (45) of Muzondakaya Village under Chief Musikavanhu in Chipinge, was jailed seven years by Chipinge magistrate Mr Vuso Gapara for taking the tusks home.

She was facing charges of contravening Section 82 (1) of the Parks and Wildlife general regulations of 1990 and she pleaded guilty.

Mr Witness Nyamundaya, appearing for the State, indicated that on September 9 at around 10am, Simango was herding cattle at Save Valley Conservancy in Humani Range.

“While herding cattle, Simango saw a dead elephant whereupon she proceeded to remove one ivory tusk and went home with it, he said.

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“On the 10th day of September 2018 around 10am, Simango again proceeded to Save Conservancy where she removed the outstanding tusk from the dead elephant and took it home.”

Mr Nyamundaya said on the same day at around 8pm, police Constable Mudhugu received a tip-off from the public to the effect that Simango had two elephant tusks at her home.

“On the 11th day of September 2018 at around 9am, Constable Mudhugu, Sergeant Denhere and Constable Ncube proceeded to the accused’s residence where they located the accused person and requested to conduct a search of her premises,” he said.

The search was conducted leading to the recovery of the two ivory tusks, which were hidden in one of the accused’s houses. Simango was subsequently arrested and escorted to Middle Sabi Police Station.

“On September 12, the two ivory tusks were weighed by Zimpost official Mr Lyson Madzura, in the presence of Simango and Detective Constable Mashingaidze, and their weight was 15,4 kilogrammes,” said Mr Nyamundaya.

The value of the recovered ivory tusks was estimated at $3 852, 50. The Herald