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Chinese man arrested at JKIA with ivory

A Chinese was arrested on Friday night as he tried to board a China-bound Kenya Airways flight at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) with 0.68 kg of ivory.

He was coming from Maputo, Mozambique.

Kenya Wildlife Service Corporate Communications Manager Paul Udoto said Mr Ou Kaiming, 32, will spend the weekend in police custody and will be arraigned in the Makadara law courts on Monday.

“See you in court,” said Mr Udoto.

Mr Kaiming is the third Chinese in as many weeks to be tried under the new Wildlife Conservation and Management Act 2013. 

The punitive law provides for fines of up to Sh20 million and a life sentence for poaching and dealing in ivory.

Last month, another Chinese who pleaded guilty to trafficking in ivory was fined Sh20 million or serve seven years in jail. 

Mr Tang Yong Jian, 40, was arrested while carrying an elephant ivory tusk weighing 3.4 kg in a suitcase.

Earlier this month, a Chinese who had been released after paying a Sh1million fine on charges of ivory smuggling was arrested at JKIA after the Director of Public Prosecutions appealed against the light sentence.

Chunsheng Zhang, 31, had been sentenced to five years in jail or Sh1million fine which he immediately paid.

And in January, a Chinese suspected ivory smuggler was arrested in Kenya and extradited to China in a historic collaboration between the two countries,  the country’s official news agency, Xinhua, reported.

Kenyan authorities arrested the man, surnamed Xue, in Nairobi on January 17 and he was extradited the following day.