The suspected ivory dealers appearing at the Buganda Road court

Two UPDF soldiers and three civilians have been charged with illegal possession of 12 pieces of ivory at Buganda Road magistrate’s court.

Major Allen Rutagira and Corporal Collins and the three co-accused were charged with unlawful possession of protected species and, accepting and conspiracy to commit a felony.

Prosecution led by the Resident State Attorney Jonathan Muwaganya, avers that the accused conspired to commit the crimes and were arrested on March 24 at Hotel Africana while in possession of the ivory pieces weighing 19 kilogrames, valued at Shs 129 million.

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Buganda road court Chief Magistrate James Ereemye granted Corporal Kamugisha Collin cash bail of Shs2 million but remanded Maj Rutagira after finding inconsistencies with his sureties’ introduction letters and national identity cards.

The three civilians, Simon Mbonye, Alex Sande, and Silva Kiiza were also denied bail since they had no lawyers and their sureties lacked documentation.

Hunting and trading in wildlife and wildlife products without authorisation is prohibited by law.