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Suspected Elephant Poacher Trampled To Death By Herd In Africa

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Suspected Elephant Poacher Trampled To Death By Herd In Africa

A suspected elephant poacher has been trampled to death by a herd of the massive animals in South Africa's Kruger National Park.

South African National Parks said in a statement on their website that the man and two accomplices were running away from security officers in the park.

During this time, the alleged poacher crossed paths with elephants and their calves and met a grisly end.

"Field Rangers were out on a routine patrol at the Phabeni area when they detected incoming spoor and made a follow up in pursuit of the suspects," the statement reads.

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Credit: PA
Credit: PA

"Three individuals were spotted by the Rangers and attempted to run away, but Rangers requested backup from the Airwing and K9 unit. When they realised they had been spotted, the suspected poachers dropped an axe and a bag with their provisions in an attempt to escape from the rangers."

They managed to catch one of the suspects thanks to the air and dog units.

When asked where the other two men were, the suspect explained how he didn't know whether one got out alive.

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"The suspect informed the rangers that the group had run into a herd of elephants and was not sure if his accomplice had managed to escape," South African National Parks added.

"The Rangers discovered his accomplice badly trampled and unfortunately succumbed to his injuries. The third suspect is said to have been injured in the eye but continued to flee. A rifle was recovered and the case was referred to police, who together with the pathology team attended to the scene."

The rangers who helped stop the suspected poachers have been praised for their work.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA
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The Managing Executive of the Kruger National Park, Gareth Coleman said: "We are proud of the teamwork and dedication of our Rangers Corp, our aviators and the K9 unit. It is unfortunate that a life was unnecessarily lost. Only through discipline, teamwork and tenacity will we be able to help stem the tide of rhino poaching in KNP.

"The campaign against poaching is the responsibility of all us; it threatens many livelihoods, destroys families and takes much-needed resources to fight crime which could be used for creating jobs and development."

People in the area surrounding the Kruger National Park are being told to be on the lookout for the third suspect.

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, there are around 415,000 elephants left in Africa.

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Thousands of the majestic animals are slaughtered every year for their tusks, even though there are massive penalties for trafficking ivory.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: News, Animals

Stewart Perrie
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