The intermediate court of Ngoma district in Eastern Province has handed a five-year prison sentence and a fine of Rwf5 million to six men convicted of hunting, selling, wounding and killing animals in Akagera National Park.
The trial was held in public on Thursday, at Kabare Sector office, Kayonza District, where eight suspects were all present, two of whom were cleared of the charges against them.
All the accused pleaded guilty that they entered the national park without any permits. Some accepted that they indded used traps, spears and machetes to kill warthogs, impalas and buffalos intentionally.
The crimes were committed in September and October 2018.
The court ordered that pursuant to a ministerial decree that lists animals prohibited from being hunted, as well as the provisions of law no. 48/2018, regulating environment, six men were convicted of hunting, selling, wounding and killing animals in Akagera National Park.
The court ordered that two others accused with them be released, since they were found not guilty.
One of those who were immediately released, Ahizangeza, known as Muyango, said that more than two weeks in prison taught him a lesson.
“I have learned a great lesson from prison and I will never dare and attempt to hunt animals. I will even warn others who may indulge themselves in the action because it has no profit but risk of ending up in prison,” he said.