Case against duo arrested in R9.9m abalone operation remanded for a week

Officials stopped two vehicles on the N7 and found 70 boxes containing more than 23,000 units of dried abalone.

The Hawks arrested two men for the possession of dried abalone worth R9.9 million during an operation on 17 May 2021. Picture: @SAPoliceService/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - The case against alleged abalone smugglers arrested in a R9.9 million bust has been remanded for a week.

The two men appeared in the Atlantis Magistrates Court on Wednesday after their arrest along the N7 towards Malmesbury on Monday.

The matter resumes on 26 May.

The bust was executed by police, the Hawks and fisheries officials.

READ: Shell games: Unravelling the complex web around abalone poaching

They responded to a tip off about the transportation of illegally harvested abalone.

Officials stopped two vehicles and found 70 boxes containing more than 23,000 units of dried abalone.

The Fisheries Department estimates that South Africa loses between R260 million and R2 billion through abalone poaching.

ALSO READ: Black gold: A fresh approach needed to tackle SA's illegal abalone trade

During the last financial year, the department confiscated over 26 tonnes of abalone and made 149 arrests.

However, experts said that it was not even scratching the surface and the international conservation organisation, Traffic, said that abalone poaching had worsened over the past five years.

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