Italian national pleads guilty to ivory trafficking

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 21 Jun, 2022 14:37 | < 1 min read
Italian national Paolo Brondi who is accused of ivory trafficking. PHOTO/Sophie Njoka
Italian national Paolo Brondi who is accused of ivory trafficking. PHOTO/Sophie Njoka

An Italian national has pleaded guilty to trafficking ivory valued at Ksh2 million in Mombasa.

Paolo Brondi appeared before Mombasa Principal Magistrate, Martin Rabera, and pleaded guilty to charges of being in possession of a wildlife trophy of endangered species, contrary to section 92 (4) of the wildlife conservation and Management Act.

Magistrate stunned by trafficking confession

The suspect's admission to the charges forced the magistrate to intervene and question him if he understood the charges.

"Are you aware of the type of charges you have pleaded guilty to? Do you know these are very serious charges that would see you spend the rest of your life in jail and attract a hefty fine? Should l give you more to rethink about the pleadings?" the magistrate posed.

The magistrate directed that the suspect be provided with an interpreter to enable him make an informed decision before sentencing.

According to the suspect, he had used the piece of ivory to make a statue of himself, an act which he thought did not qualify as a criminal offence.

He further noted that he was excited to leave the country for Italy with the ivory which he termed as a souvenir before detectives arrested him.

The suspect was arrested on June 16, 2022, at Moi International Airport in Changamwe sub-county while in possession of the ivory weighing 0.6Kilograms.