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Japanese national caught with protected plants appears in court

Kazuhiro Mizobuchi was arrested on 9 May after he was found in possession of 53 indigenous succulent plants.

Euphorbia stellispina. Picture: plantzafrica.com

CAPE TOWN - A Japanese national was arrested in the Northern Cape for being in possession of a protected plant species.

Forty-year-old Kazuhiro Mizobuchi appeared in court in Kathu on Monday.

He was arrested on 9 May after he was found in possession of 53 indigenous succulent plants, Euphorbia, which are related to the cactus family.

The vehicle he was travelling in was also confiscated.

“A joint-operation between the Hawks, Kimberley flying squad and the Western Cape National Nature Conservation team led to the arrest of Mr Mizobuchi on 9 May,” said the Hawks' Nomthandazo Mnisi.

Mizobuchi is being kept in custody and is due back in court next week.