Police in Malawi have arrested 28 Zambians for illegally settling into Kasungu National Park contrary to the Parks and Wildlife Acts of Malawi.
According to Malawi news Agency, the Zambians were spotted by the parks and wildlife officers for Kasungu National Park on 24th November, 2013 while on patrol to the western border of Zambia and Kasungu National Park.
The 28 Zambians who are detained at a police station in Kasungu area were arrested on Monday, November 25.
The youngest among the arrested Zambians is 17 while the oldest is aged 54.
According to Kasungu Police Spokesperson, Edwin Kaunda, when Parks officials reached Mtenthe area they discovered that a group of people have settled in the park and were busy cutting down trees with the aim of picking the caterpillars (called Matondo in local language).
“These people were arrested on Monday, 25th November, 2013. When interviewed they told the parks officers that they are Zambians from Traditional Authority (TA) Chanje in Chipata and had been there for some time,” explained Kaunda.
The 28 Zambian Nationals will appear in court soon to answer different charges ranging from residing in the protected area without permit contrary to Section 32 of the Parks and Wildlife Act, cultivating in the protected area without permit contrary to Section 35and Illegal entry into the protected area contrary to Section 32(1).
Furthermore, they are also expected to answer charges of illegal conveyance of weapons contrary to Section 33 and Illegal taking and destruction of trees in the protected area contrary to Section 35(b) of Parks and Wildlife Act.