Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Vietnamese man held with rhino horns in S. Africa | Look At Vietnam

Vietnamese man held with rhino horns in S. Africa

April 26, 2012
LookAtVietnam – The security force of South Africa’s OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg arrested a Vietnamese young man when he was about to leave the country with three rhino horns, authorities said Monday.
A rhino horn (for illustration only).  (Photo: Eyewitness News)
Upon searching the 25-year-old man’s luggage, the customs officers at the airport found the horns hidden in his bags, the New York Daily News quoted SA Revenue Service (SARS) spokesperson Adrian Lackay as saying.
The horns weigh about 13.9 kg in total and have an estimated value of about US$900,000, SARS said.
The man had travelled to South Africa before and he was being closely monitored up until his arrest, Lackay said.
The man, who was apparently in the country on a student visa, said he was here to learn English, according to Eyewitness News.
The name of the young man has yet to be announced.
Since the beginning of 2012, about 181 rhino horns have been poached in South Africa, according to local wildlife officials.
Last year, police detained 232 alleged poachers, of whom 26 were killed in clashes with law enforcement officers.
South Africa’s Environmental Agency warned that the number of rhinos killed in the country this year might end up doubling that of last year, putting the animal at risk of extinction in the near future.
Currently, black and white rhinos in South Africa account for 90 percent of the rhino population in Africa, as well as in the world, the agency reported.
The South African government has appealed to the public to assist in fighting rhino poaching.
VietNamNet/Tuoi Tre
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