Tanzanian security officials confiscate elephant tusks

On Monday morning, Tarime Rorya Regional Police Commander (RPC) Henry Mwaibambe shows journalists five elephant tusks confiscated from two young men. (Photo by Jacob Mugini)

Tanzanian security officials have charged two men with illegal possession of elephant tusks worth 170.17 million Tanzanian shillings.

The Tarime Rorya Regional Police Commander (RPC), Henry Mwaibambe, made the announcement at a press conference in his office on Monday this week.

Commander Mwaibambe named the suspects as Mseti Daniel (27) and Peter Moina (25), both residents of rural villages in the Mara region.

The arrest was made possible, he said, by a national task force in collaboration with police officers of the Tarime Rorya special police zone, as the ivory was being transported to unknown market places on July 18th of this year.

“The suspects were caught hiding 5 elephant tusks…while keeping them in a plastic bag,” Commander Mwaibambe said. He said the tusks weighed 24.55 kilograms, and were transported using a motorbike.

On Friday of last week , the suspects were taken to a court in Tarime, where they face economic sabotage charges, he said.

Security personnel are searching for additional suspects in connection with ivory trade in the area.

The RPC asked members of the public to continue providing tips that will help eliminate ivory trade in that district, which has villages bordering on Serengeti National Park.

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