Rhino poacher trampled to death by elephant before being devoured by pride of lions at South Africa’s Kruger National Park. Accomplices charged with illegal hunting.
A rhino poacher seeking prey in South Africa’s Kruger National Park has been killed after being trampled to death by an elephant before being by a pride of lions leaving behind his skull and a pair of pants.
Three of the man’s friends ran away after the victim was crushed by the elephant and rang his family.
The surviving men said an angry elephant surprised them as they stalked endangered rhino and stamped their friend to death giving them a chance to run for safety.
The victim’s family contacted the park’s ranger service who launched a search on foot on Wednesday.
The Kruger National Park Air Wing also searched for the victim’s body but had to return to base due to failing light local media reported.
Rhino poacher trampled to death by elephant and devoured by pride of lions: ‘…
On Thursday, the search for the missing man was resumed whereupon the missing man’s body was recovered.
According to Don English, Skukuza Regional Ranger, the man’s body was recovered near the Crocodile bridge section of the park.
Offered English, ‘Indications found at the scene suggested that a pride of lions had devoured the remains leaving only a human skull and a pair of pants.’
Glenn Phillips, managing executive of the reserve said, ‘Entering Kruger National Park illegally and on foot is not wise, it holds many dangers and this incident is evidence of that,’
‘It is very sad to see the daughters of the deceased mourning the loss of their father, and worse still, only being able to recover very little of his remains.’
Phillips said the man’s four accomplices were arrested and will appear in court in due course.
Local police have arrested three of the man’s accomplices and seized two .375 hunting rifles and ammunition along with an axe the UK’s Sun reported. A single empty shoe along with bloodied body parts and limbs were recovered.
Said Brigadier Leonard Hlathi, police spokesman, ‘The suspects appeared yesterday, April 5, 2019, at the Komatipoort Magistrate’s Court facing charges of possession of firearms and ammunition without a license, conspiracy to poach as well as trespassing.
‘Upon their appearance, the court remanded them in custody and will reappear at the same court on April 12, 2019, pending a formal bail application.
‘An inquest was opened in connection with the dead suspect.’
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The Kruger National Park is South Africa’s biggest reserve in the country and covers over 12,000 square miles and is home to the Big Five of rhino, elephant, buffalo, lion and leopard.