THE Itezhi Tezhi Magistrates Court has found a 37-year old farmer with a case to answer in a matter he is charged with illegal possession of Ivory and ammunitions.
Magistrates Keegan Litia ruled that the prosecution had established a prima facie case against the accused person in all the charges and then placed him on his defense.
In this case, Feston Chiboyi Shanduba, of Munaluchena Village in Chief Shezongo’s Chiefdom in Itezhi Tezhi District in Central Province is charged with two counts of wildlife related offense.
In the first count, Shanduba is charged with unlawful possession of prescribed trophy contrary to section 130 of the Wildlife Act number 14 of 2015 of the Laws of Zambia.
Particulars of the offence are that Shanduba on 4th July , 2020, in Itezhi Tezhi District in Central Province, had in his possession prescribed trophy namely Ivory without a certificate of ownership issued to him by the Director of Department of National Parks and Wildlife.
In the second count, Shanduba is charged with unlawful possession of ammunitions contrary to section 10 (1) (2) (a) (b) of the firearm act num- ber 110 of the laws of Zambia.
Particulars were that Shanduba on the same date in Itezhi Tezhi did possess 6 by 458 live ammunition without a license.
After prosecution witnesses testified, magistrates Litia said “from the evidence adduced before this court, I find that the state has established a prima facie case against the accused.”
And in his defense, Shanduba testified how he was apprehended and taken in the bush for questioning and later searched his house which yielded no results as he had no ivory.
“The bundled me into the vehicle from my home. After covering kilometers, I was told to disembark from a vehicle and went into the bush and they asked me if I was Chiboyi to which I responded in the affirmative. Then they told me that my friend had gone into the park and that I was holding ivory” Shanduba said.
Shanduba testified that he was then driven back to his home where a search was conducted and when it yielded nothing, the officers drove him back to the bush where he had been taken at first.
He said it was there where one officer got into the bush and brought a sack that was later put on his laps.
The court further heard that elephant tasks were found inside the sack when it was opened and at this point he was taken to Ngoma Wildlife Headquarters in Itezhi Tezhi where he was charged with the subject offence.
The matter has since been adjourned to 8th September, 2020 for judgment.