According to BBC News, the other three gang members are still at large.
Over the last few years, rhino horn exhibits at museums have been targeted by thieves hoping to cash in on black market prices.
Rhino death toll rising
The latest figures released by the South African Government show that the country’s rhino death toll has risen to at least 262 since the beginning of the year.
In an effort to combat the abuse of hunting loopholes, the Department of Environmental Affairs noted that “amended norms and standards” for the trophy hunting of rhinos went into effect on April 10th.
Hunting applicants must provide “proof of membership of a hunting association in the country of usual residence of the hunting client”.
In addition, the “hunting association must be recognised by the government of the country of residence of the hunting client” and the applicant must provide “a curriculum vitae indicating his/her hunting experience in his/her country of usual residence and proof of previous experience in the hunting of any African species”.
(See “Mules Hunting Rhinos? Sinister Scam Unfolds in South Africa” for more information about how trophy hunting is linked to illegal trade in rhino horns.)
Meanwhile, five people arrested for rhino crimes in South Africa have been denied bail.
News24 reports that the appeal by Duncan Mnisi, Tiyene Mabunda, Charles Mabunda and Doctor Mgwenyama was rejected by the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria.
All four were Kruger National Park employees at the time of their arrest.
Also denied bail was Joseph Nyalunga. He is facing 16 counts of dealing in rhino horn and money laundering.
Nyalunga — a former police officer — was arrested earlier this year for allegedly dealing in rhino horns while out on bail for a previous crime.
Earlier this month, game farmer (and convicted rhino horn dealer) Jacques Els began serving his eight year sentence, after a failed appeal.
White rhino via Shutterstock.
Rhishja is the founder of Annamiticus, a nonprofit organization which provides educational information and news about wildlife crime and endangered species. She is the Editor of the blogs Annamiticus, Rhino Horn is Not Medicine, and Project Pangolin, a Producer for the upcoming documentary "The Price", author of the book "Murder, Myths & Medicine", and host of the "Behind the Schemes" podcast. When Rhishja is not blogging about the illegal wildlife trade, she enjoys rocking out to live music.