Suspected Poachers Gunned Down by Paul Udoto Director of Communications Kenya Wildlife Service
Three suspected poachers were last night gunned down in Aberdares National Park after a fierce exchange of fire with Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) rangers. An AK 47 rifle was recovered from the suspects alongside two rounds of ammunition, a spear, an axe, and a weighing machine.
KWS has intensified patrols and intelligence information gathering within the Aberdare ecosystem since the poaching of an elephant in the park on May 12, 2016. For the last three days, KWS security personnel have been following up intelligence about a gang of three men reportedly out to execute another poaching within Aberdare National Park.
Yesterday, KWS officers while following up on a poaching incident got new information that the gang had planned to enter the park for a poaching mission. At about 6.30pm, a team of two armed rangers while on intelligence gathering were informed that the three-man gang had already gained entry into the park through the electric fence line at a point near Mitero fence guard post.
The two rangers swiftly moved to the area, where they managed to trace the movement of three men deep inside the Park. After tracking and losing the footprints, they decided to strategically mount an ambush in one of the routes frequently used by poachers in the park.
At around 8.00pm, the rangers heard murmurs at a point next to them under a tree. When the suspects were challenged to surrender instead opened fire on the rangers, forcing them to respond. After a fierce gun fire exchange, the rangers conducted a search of the area where they found the three men dead.
Police visited the scene of crime and two of the deceased were identified as Lazarus Kanyiri Kaheho aged 33 years from Tetu and Erastus Kagara from Mwiyogo location in Nyeri County. The third body is yet to be identified.
The bodies were collected and taken to Nyeri Level Five Mortuary.