R2.6m rhino horn trafficking suspects receive R50K bail each
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Two suspects nabbed with 19 rhino horn valued at R2.6 million, Schalk Steyn and Johannes Groenewald, received R50 000 bail each in the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court on Friday.
The 48-year-old Steyn and the 53-year-old Groenewald were arrested while transporting 19 rhino horn in two Toyota Hilux bakkies, the Hawks said. They have been charged with the illegal possession and selling of rhino horn.
Groenewald, a well-known game farmer, is allegedly the mastermind of one South Africa’s largest rhino horn trafficking syndicates, while Groenewald is a Mbombela businessman.
According to a news website, the accused have to report to a police station once a week and are not allowed to contact any of the witnesses. Groenewald has had to hand over his passport in a previous case, while Steyn had to hand over his to the investigating officer.
The pair were arrested during a multi-disciplinary operation conducted on Wednesday by the Hawks’ Organised Crime Investigation, with the assistance of private investigators.
Their case has been postponed to September 10 for further investigation.