Police at the Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) in Lilongwe on 29 August this year at around 11:00 hours arrested a Chinese citizen for attempting to export banned game trophies popularly known as ivory.
According to KIA Police Public Relations Officer Sapulain Chitonde Lee, the banned elephant products weighing about half a kilogramme were confiscated at the Airport on 29 August after an X-Ray exposed them.
Chitonde said the ivory was well-packed in counterfoil papers – a strong material that blocks x-ray from scanning through.
“Our officers managed to detect what was inside because they are professionals,” said Chitonde.
The owner of the bag initially denied carrying anything strange in his bag and implored the police not to bother opening it. However, the police demanded him to open it. Only then did he, through his girlfriend, disclose that it was in fact only a small ivory. He begged the police to let him go.
Speaking through his girlfriend (name withheld, but works in Area 9 as a nanny, a post she has held for 9 years), Mr Zhang Hongzhi disclosed that the Ivory was given to them by someone who stays in Area 2. He failed to mention his name.
Mr Zhang Hongzhi was supposed to fly from KIA through Addis-Ababa using Ethiopian Airlines Flight Number ET 877 to Beijing.
The suspect will be charged with illegal exportation of specimen of protected species which is contrary to Section 98 (b) of the National Parks and Wildlife (Amendment) Act as read with Section 111 of the same Law