Two men in Kenya surrender illegal possessions to authorities

By HOU LIQIANG in Nairobi, Kenya (chinadaily.com.cn)     Updated : 2016-04-06

Two men are facing fines of 63 million Kenya Shillings ($620,000) in total for illegal possession of ivory after the Kenyan government announced a 21-day amnesty for the surrender of any wildlife trophies.

Wilson Kiyayooni and a minor, whose name is not disclosed, were arrested in Narok county for illegally possessing elephant tusks weighing over 3 kg, read a statement from Kenya Wildlife service.

While Kiyayooni is facing fines of 40 million Kenya Shillings or life imprisonment, his minor partner was released by the court, the statement said.

In another case in Laikipia county, James Aoi Lokigen also showed up in the court for illegal possession of 3 kg of ivory.

The man is facing fines of 3 million Kenya Shillings or two years imprisonment for illegal possession of a government trophy. Meanwhile, he was also convicted of dealing with a government trophy without authorization and is facing fines of 20 million Kenya Shillings or life imprisonment.

The two cases were released after Judi Wakhungu, cabinet secretary of the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Regional Development Authorities, announced on March 30 that Kenya is going to burn 105 metric tons (231,485 pounds) of seized ivory and 1.3 tons of rhino horn on April 30.

Wakhungu also announced the start of a 21- day amnesty as of March 30 for the surrender of any wildlife trophies that are held without a permit issued by the Kenya Wildlife Service. She said those who turn in jewelry or trinkets made from ivory or rhino horn will not be punished.