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22 January 2024

Successful Apprehension of Abalone Poachers at Smitswinkel Bay, Cape Town

The South African National Parks (SANParks) Environment Crime Investigation (ECI) Unit received tip-offs from the public about potential poaching activities at Smitswinkel Bay, Cape Town.

A prompt response by the ECI, its Canine Unit and the Table Mountain National Park (TMNP) Marine Unit Rangers led to the apprehension of two suspected poachers who were found with a total of 291 units of abalone.

The apprehended suspects were transported to the South African Police Services. The suspects will face charges related to illegal harvesting, and the confiscated abalone has been handed over for further action.

This successful operation is a testament to SANParks’ dedication to combating illegal activities that threaten marine resources. The TMNP incorporates the two Marine Protected Areas (MPA), Table Mountain MPA and Robben Island MPA. These ensure the protection of the unique marine ecosystems around the Cape Peninsula, including restricted and controlled zones.

SANParks encourages the public who are a critical stakeholder in the successful management of national parks to continue reporting any suspicious activities related to illegal actions and by so doing, contribute to the preservation of our natural environment.