Suspected rhino poacher killed by elephant, 'devoured' by lions: South African authorities

Suspected rhino poacher killed by elephant, 'devoured' by lions: South African authorities

Elephants at the Kruger National Park
A file photo of two elephants in the Kruger National Park near Nelspruit, South Africa. (Photo: AFP/Issouf Sanogo)

DURBAN: The remains of a suspected rhino poacher were recovered at a South African park after he was reportedly killed by an elephant, local officials said on Saturday (Apr 6) in a media statement.

Park rangers at the Kruger National Park (KNP) on Thursday found a human skull and pieces of clothing during search operations, the South African Police Reserve said.

In a separate release, South African National Parks said that indications at the scene suggested the remains were "devoured" by lions.

According to the release, the victim’s family were informed by his accomplices that he had been killed by an elephant while they were in the national park to poach rhinos on Tuesday evening.

The man’s accomplices, aged between 26 and 35, carried his body to the road so that it could be found by passers-by in the morning, police said.

The remains were found the same day. 

“Entering Kruger National Park illegally and on foot is not wise, it holds many dangers and this incident is evidence of that,” KNP managing executive Glenn Phillips said. 

According to the KNP website, the area where the man's remains were found is known for its concentration of lion prides and its rhino population.

The man’s accomplices face charges of possession of firearms and ammunition without a licence, conspiracy to poach, as well as trespassing.

An inquest has been opened with regards to the deceased.

Source: CNA/ga(mn)

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