Security officers in the northwestern Kenya town of Kitale on Thursday arrested a poacher in possession of 14 kilograms of elephant tusks with a market value of 1.4 million shillings (about 14,000 U.S dollars).

Local police commander Ayub Gitonga said the suspected poacher had been on the radar of security agencies amid spike in poaching of iconic animals in northern Kenya counties.

“We set a trap after we received intelligence reports that the suspect was in possession of the consignment and was looking for market,” said Gitonga.

He said that poachers have taken advantage of the heavy rains in northern Kenya to sneak into wildlife sanctuaries and kill elephants and other giant land mammals.

“We are working on intelligence information to stamp out the menace and protect wildlife and we urge the public to collaborate with security agents to bring to book those engaged in illegal activities in our national parks,” said Gitonga.

He said police have launched a manhunt for six poachers on the run in the expansive plains dotting Kenya’s northwestern region.

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