Sting operation leads to arrest of 2 people in possession of 4 tortoises, 28 rare lizards

(Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

(Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images)

A joint sting operation led to the arrest of two individuals for allegedly dealing in protected animals.

They were arrested in Kalahari, Northern Cape, on Friday.

The two, aged 23 and 50, were found in possession of valuable reptiles and tortoises.

Northern Cape Hawks spokesperson Nomthandazo Mnisi said a joint intelligence-driven operation by the Hawks’ Wild Trafficking team and the National Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment’s Green Scorpions led to the duo’s arrest for contravening the Nature Conservation Act 9 of 2009.

They were nabbed after information surfaced about people allegedly looking for a potential buyer for reptiles. 

“A sting operation was conducted at Askham garage in Kalahari, where the suspects were found in possession of protected valuable reptiles, including four tortoises and 28 rare kind of lizards. Members also seized a Garmin GPS, three cellphones, endoscope and 6g of heroin and cash,” said Mnisi.

The two are expected to appear in the Upington Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

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