Source: Illegal possession of live pangolin lands duo 9-year jail term – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 2, 2017
ILLEGAL possession of a live pangolin has landed two Bulawayo residents a nine-year jail term each.
BY SILAS NKALA
Josam Mumpande (62) and Anthony Kasiriworo (48) were convicted and sentenced on Tuesday by Bulawayo magistrate Franklin Mkhwananzi, despite their plea of not guilty to contravening sections of the Parks and Wildlife Act.
Prosecutor Nkathazo Dlodlo told the court that on October 27 this year, a whistleblower alerted detectives from Minerals and Border Control Unit that the two men were carrying the endangered special animal in their car.
Police intercepted the vehicle near Hillside Dam and recovered the pangolin weighing 5kg and valued at $5 000.
The pangolin was forfeited to the State.
Several people have been jailed for illegal possession of pangolins over the past few years, as demand for the nocturnal, ant-eating creature comes mostly from China, where its flesh is sought-after as a delicacy and its scales — made from keratin, like human fingernails and hair — are used as traditional medicine, which are said to cure skin disease, asthma as well as promote lactation.
Researchers have discovered that pangolin smuggling has increased in tandem with China’s expanding middle class and the Asian country’s growing presence in Africa.