JOHANNESBURG, July 24 – One rhino poaching suspect, who is a police constable, was shot dead and three others arrested following a high-speed chase and a shootout with police along the R22 in Hluhluwe, northern KwaZulu-Natal.
Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo said the police anti-rhino poaching team, acting on information, tried to intercept a bakkie traveling from Melmoth to Hluhluwe, ostensibly to poach rhino.
“The vehicle, fitting the specified description, was spotted but efforts to try and stop it had proven futile after the suspects sped away, resulting in a high-speed chase and a shootout between the suspects and police,” said Naidoo.
“As a result of the shootout, the suspect’s vehicle veered off the road. Three suspects were injured and subsequently arrested and a fourth suspect, a police constable was fatally wounded.”
Police recovered a Toyota Hilux Bakkie, a 303 hunting rifle with the serial number filed off, 303 live ammunition, a silencer, a 9mm Pistol, 9mm live rounds and two axes.
Naidoo said the suspects in a hospital under police guard.
Once they are discharged they will be brought to court to face charges that may include attempted murder and unlawful possession of arms and ammunition.