Dear friends of the environment,
REF: illegal traffic/ Sandalwood
Acting on an intelligence tip and after months of stalking – a team composed by KWS, AP and Wildlife Rangers from Laikipia Nature Conservancy, managed to impound possibly one of the largest sandalwood hauls ever- estimated in excess of 14 tons.
One suspect was arrested. The suspect the denied charges and was given a 10 million bond. As he has not paid the bond, he is still in remand. The sandal incident was widely reported in all the news.
Date: 15 January 2016
For almost a year the sandalwood trade has been revamped by the notorious cartel.
Ol Ari Nyiro/ Laikipia Nature Conservancy has the largest amount of Osyris Lanceolata – African Sandalwood in the Eastern rift.
Sandalwood is listed as an endangered species.
For the last two months since last night time illegal sandal collection by canter in the area of Kaptuya, we have been aware of continuous sandal poaching and practically daily arrests were made by our scouts- OB available- and all suspects released on small bonds never to materialize again at hearing. At least ten mandates of arrests were issued by the Nyahururu courts. None was followed up.
Locality: Lugga Mandera Tebelekwa/ Kaptuya on Laikipia Nature Conservancy East Pokot boundary.
The sandal was stored in two separate boma, one at 100 metres, and one approximately 800 metres from boundary. The amount was estimated in excess of 14 ton.
The area was assessed last night, the sandalwood stores identified, and the combined operation started at 6 am today.
Kuki & part of the team
I joined the team In the field to congratulate them. Our tractors and trailers had to do several trips to collect all the sandal- which I believe should be burnt as soon as feasible.
I would like to specifically commend:
My friends, The Kenya Wildlife Services team, and Corporal Kipteti Lenaram Lelesit with:
KWS Rangers :
And KWS Driver David Muchemi
A special thank you to Ass. Directors Aggrey Maumo, who helped despite being on leave, and Ass Director Simon Githau, for prompt and efficient support throughout, and to Julius Kimani.
The Administration Police :
CPL Francis Ekaale Majong
Ap Zaccaeus Mulongo Shaka
Ap Caxton Ngari Wairimu
The Laikipia Nature Conservancy tireless Team:
With Jacob Ekaran, and Scouts:
David Kiplimo Seurei
George Njoroge Njuguna
Samuel Kimuunji Nangiro
Boniface Kyalo Musyoki
Stephen Epeyonon, Joseph Epeyonon, Stephen Ali Apetet,
The Media team with Lydia Mwangi who grasped the importance of educating the public to the importance of protecting biodiversity.
And tireless Martin Kuria.
Last but not least, Nigel, for all the logistic support.
Asante sana! It has been a long day.
For Intelligence Section
The Gallmann Memorial Foundation
In Ol Ari Nyiro
Laikipia Nature Conservancy