Police arrested two men in the CBD for allegedly trafficking and trying to sell a pangolin for approximately R350 000. Professor Ray Jansen, who has been working with pangolins for more than 10 years, said incident took place around 16:00 at the underground parking at Sammy Marks Square on Wednesdays. SAPS said they received a tip-off at around 10am of the endangered animal in transit from Joburg to Pretoria, and had set up an operation to catch the men.

Jansen said two men were arrested for being in possession of and trying to sell a threatened and protected species. He said the arrests were made through combined intelligence operations by the Tshwane metro police department’s drug division, the Hawks and The African Pangolin Working Group. Preliminary investigations revealed the pangolin was from Thabazimbi. Further investigations were expected to yield more information on where the pangolin was headed, or who it was meant for.

Jansen said the African Pangolin Working Group, working with police, had numerous operations in Gauteng in 2020.“Nationally, we have had 33 pangolins retrieved out of the trade this year.” He said Gauteng and Limpopo had also been a hotspot of the pangolin trade, this year. He said once South African moved to level 4 lockdown, there was a huge spike in the pangolin trade. He alleged that these animals were becoming the most traded mammals in the world. They are used in traditional Chinese medicine, which is why people are willing to pay large amounts of money for these animals. #ladi_jaja?

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