Hefty sentences for 3 Grahamstown rhino poachers

Forget Ndlovu, Jabulani Ndlovu and Sikhumbuzo Ndlovu were charged with more than 55 counts of rhino poaching between the 2013 and 2016.

Convicted rhino poachers Forget Ndlovu, Jabulani Ndlovu and Sikhumbuzo Ndlovu in the Grahamstown High Court for sentencing. Picture: SAPS/Twitter.

CAPE TOWN - The Grahamstown High Court has shown no mercy as it slapped three rhino poachers with hefty sentences on Wednesday.

Forget Ndlovu, Jabulani Ndlovu and Sikhumbuzo Ndlovu were charged with more than 55 counts of rhino poaching between 2013 and 2016, after they were arrested in June 2016 at Makana Resort, Grahamstown.

They were found guilty on all 55 separate counts, with the shortest sentence handed down being five years and the longest being 15 years.

All the sentences will run concurrently which means that each of the suspects will serve 25 years imprisonment.

Among the items found in their possession was a rhino horn which had been freshly harvested, estimated at R1.2 million, a darting rifle and two rented cars.

At the time of their arrests, the suspects were linked to 10 rhino poaching incidents in the Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal.

The police's Khaya Tonjeni said: โ€œThe judge said he had considered all the possibilities and tried to ameliorate the situation by making sure that these sentences run concurrently, resulting in 25 years for each of the three men.โ€