JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) – South African Police have seized rhino horns worth over R24 million at the OR Tambo International Airport.
Police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Katlego Mogale said over thirty pieces of rhino horns were seized during an on-going operation which is aimed at ridding the airport of criminal activities.
She said recent reports of the detection of rhino horns in the East originating from Southern Africa led to increased enforcement interventions on outbound flights at the cargo area of the airport.
Mogale stated that while performing K9 police unit searches at several cargo warehouses, the K9 members arrived at certain warehouse where export consignments were packed to be shipped out.
“The K9 detector dog reacted positively to a shipment destined to destination in the Middle East, said Mogale
“Upon physical examination the consignment was found to be containing door mats as well as cut and laminated ply wood. Further examination revealed over 30 pieces of rhino horn wrapped in plastic concealed under the laminated wood pieces.”
She further highlighted that successes like these are a culmination of efforts that form part of the new revised strategy that has been implemented at the OR Tambo International Airport under the leadership of police Major General Dimakatso Ndaba.
The strategy involves the South African Police Service’s Crime Intelligence, Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigation, Airports Company South Africa, OR Tambo International Airport, State Security Agency and other role players.
The multi-disciplinary team at the airport which comprises of different government departments including members from different disciplines in the South African Police Service, Customs and Excise, ACSA Security and other stakeholders are on alert and continue to work tirelessly to stop contraband including rhino horns from being smuggled through this port of entry.
Mogale also called upon the people of South Africa to continue supporting police efforts in the fight against crime.
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