lion paws suspects

North West – Four suspects have been arrested for the possession of lion paws after trying to sell them to police in North west province.

The suspects, aged between 41 and 51 were arrested by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation assisted by members of Crime Intelligence in a sting operation on Monday while allegedly trying to sell lion paws in Rustenburg.

Information was received regarding the suspects who were allegedly looking for a buyer for four lion paws that were in their possession.

Investigations were conducted resulting in a sting operation where the suspects tried to sell the paws to an undercover agent for R300 000.

Read also: Poachers kill 8 lions for their paws in Rusternberg

All suspects were taken into custody and they will appear before the Rustenburg Magistrate’s Court on 08 January 2019 where they are to face charges of contravening the National Environment Management-Biodiversity (NEMBA) Act.

It could not be immediately established if the case is directly related to the recent discovery of 8 lions killed near Rusternberg.