SOUTH AFRICA (CBS Local) – A group of alleged animal poachers has reportedly met their end after running into a pack of lions while trespassing in a game reserve in South Africa.
According to Nick Fox of the Sibuya Game Reserve, the remains of at least three people were found in a lion enclosure on July 3. “They were armed with, amongst other things, a high powered rifle with a silencer, an axe, wire cutters and had food supplies for a number of days,” Fox posted on the Reserve’s Facebook page. “All the hallmarks of a gang intent on killing rhino and removing their horns.”
Before the group could locate their illegal prize, the reserve says they ran into a pride of six lions and were all likely mauled to death before being dismembered and eaten by the hungry pack.
“One of our anti-poaching dogs alerted her handler at about 4:30 a.m. Monday morning that something was amiss,” Fox explained in the post.
“We’re not sure how many there were – there’s not much left of them,” the reserve’s owner added, via the BBC.
Local police are patrolling the area in case any of the suspected poachers survived the encounter. Nine rhinos have reportedly been killed by poachers in Eastern Cape province – where Sibuya Game Reserve is located – this year alone.
In February, the remains of another suspected poacher were found in South Africa’s Kruger National Park. That man was also killed and eaten by a group of lions he was trying to illegally hunt.
“The comments on our Facebook are all talking about karma and warnings,” Fox said, via The Telegraph while stating that his wildlife park remains open as the investigation continues.