DIRECTOR of Public Prosecution (DPP) office has helped the government to earn over 165bn/- through successful prosecution of 158 government trophy related cases.
According to a report on poaching cases released last week, 169 offenders, Tanzanians and foreigners, were convicted of several offences of illegal possession of elephant tusks, giraffe bones and lion teeth, among other government trophies.
The convicts had appeared before different High Courts and Resident Magistrate’s Courts and sentenced to either jail terms or payment of fines. Of the amount involved, the report shows, 811,220,963/- has so far been paid but the 164, 744,556,000/- is still pending.
There were other 305 cases worth billions of shillings, involving several people, that have not been determined. The DPP has appealed to either the High Court or Court of Appeal in some cases in which the accused were acquitted.
The appeals include the trial of two Chinese, Xiao Shaodan and Chen Jianlin Hu Liang, who were convicted by Mbeya Resident Magistrate’s Court but later acquitted by the High Court Mbeya for insufficient evidences.
The other appeal case involved Festo Emmanuel Msongaleli and Nicodem Emmanuel Msongaleli, who were convicted by District Court of Manyoni over possession of two elephant tusks. They were later acquitted by the High Court at Dodoma.
Another appeal includes Eliud Seleman, alias Muyangala and five others, whom the Singida Resident Magistrate’s Court convicted after finding them in unlawful possession of 53 pieces of elephant tusks but they were later acquitted by the High Court at Dodoma.
The acquittal of American, Artem Vardanyan and Tanzanian Iddy Missanya, whom the Moshi Resident Magistrate’s Court convicted in the famous “Tumbili case” in which the American was charged with contravening immigration laws and unlawful capture of 61 velvet monkeys, has also been challenged.
Among the major concluded cases, which the DPP won include the one in which Balton Grant, an American, was fined 64,238,600/- over illegal manufacture of a giraffe bone and Jaseem Mubarak from Qatar, who was ordered to pay 64,088,400/- for illegally possessing a pair of giraffe horns.
Other convicts are Hussein Ally Mansoor from Kuwait, who was fined 54,010,600/- for possessing 173 tortoises, David Daniel Marais and Marthius Petrus Reyneke, South Africans, who were fined a total 68,160,000/- for unlawful possession of four crocodile teeth and one hippopotamus tooth.
Four Chinese Song Lei, Xiao Shaodan, Chen Jianlin and Hu Liang were fined a total 36,080,000,000/- for unlawful possession of 11 Rhinoceros horns and Amani Rashid Ngaza, a Tanzanian, was fined 1.2bn/-for illegal possession of eight elephant tusks.