A POACHER, who was found in illegal possession of 76,7kg of raw ivory, has been convicted and sentenced to nine years in jail.

Alois Savanhu (38) had initially appeared before Hwange magistrate Livard Philemon jointly charged with Zimbabwe National Army deserter, Faunel Luphahla (34), Dete villager Ndaba Ncube (27) and Gwabalanda resident Innocencia Siwela (42).

After the trial, the magistrate found Luphahla, Ncube and Siwela not guilty and acquitted them. He then ordered Savanhu to be placed on his defence after the State said he had a case to answer.

On Thursday, Philemon sentenced Savanhu to an effective nine-year jail term.

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In convicting him, the magistrate indicated that there was overwhelming evidence proffered in court that he committed the offence.

He said “the State managed to prove its case against the accused and, therefore, the accused is found guilty of the offence as charged”.