Maputo, 28 Aug (AIM) – Mozambique’s National Criminal Investigation Service (SERNIC) has arrested three people in the northern province of Niassa for the capture and sale of pangolins.
The pangolin (sometimes known as the scaly anteater) is one of the species most under threat from poaching in Mozambique.
During the recent public presentation of the three accused, the SERNIC spokesperson in Niassa, Mirza Manguanda, told reporters that the poachers were charging prospective buyers 250,000 meticais (about 4,000 US dollars at the current exchange rate) for a live pangolin.
“They were caught in Majune district. The detention took place in collaboration with the inspection team of the Niassa Special Reserve. This year, this is the first time that Niassa has reported a case of the sale of pangolins. We noticed that the individuals were looking for a buyer for the animal”, she said.
The case, she explained, only involves Mozambican citizens “and legal procedures are being followed to hold them responsible for the crime. The pangolin was taken back to its habitat.”