Blood rhino blacklist – Magistrate no. 2

Posted on Jun 23, 2016 in Jamie Joseph
Blood rhino blacklist – Magistrate no. 2

By Jamie Joseph

In January I began the process of exposing an apparently corrupt network of magistrates, lawyers and police in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) that has allowed accused rhino poachers and rhino horn traffickers to evade conviction and jail time despite thorough, detailed evidence being presented against them. On 10 April of this year, the revered Public Protector of South Africa Thuli Madonsela accepted my case and launched a preliminary investigation into corruption enabling rhino poaching.

Rhino poaching is currently surging in KZN, the poachers almost certainly encouraged by failures in the justice system. Central to my initial revelations was Magistrate Deuteronomium Ncgobo, who presided over multiple rhino poaching cases at the Mtubatuba courthouse during which suspects pleaded guilty and were given extremely small fines and no jail time. In these particular cases the poachers were represented by defense attorney Mr Z.W. Ngwenya.

Questionable legal decisions need to be addressed as clearly the law is not acting as a deterrent; such as the pattern emerging when Magistrate Velengaziwa Mkhwanazi of the Ubombo court resides over rhino poaching cases in Zululand.

White Rhino by dam at duskPhoto credit: Shannon Wild

Read the full story on Africa Geographic. / #BloodRhinoBlacklist

Related stories:

Alleged rhino poaching kingpin trial set to be a showdown
Activist journalism can save the wild
Thuli Madonsela opens a preliminary investigation into corruption enabling rhino poaching
Rhino poaching kingpin, and the magistrate that keeps him out of jail

#2016YearOfTheRhino #ConvictGwalaRhinoKingpin #BloodRhinoBlacklist