The hunter of Cecil the Lion, Theo Bronkhost, was due in trial earlier this week to face the charges for preventing an illegal hunt. Bronkhorst’s lawyer argued that the charges were vague and does not constitute an offence. Bronkhorst has pleaded not guilty and claimed he had obtained all the licenses and permits needed for killing an elderly lion.
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While his permit may allow him to kill an elderly lion, he should know better that Cecil is a collared animal and the collar is huge and difficult to miss. Researchers had evidence that Bronkhorst tried hiding the collar by misleading researchers to think that Cecil was still alive while giving his client Walter Palmer enough time to escape to the United States. It is difficult how reliable Bronkhorst’s claims are as earlier last week, Bronkhost was arrested for smuggling animals across the border to canned hunting farms.
The trial in Hwange, south-west of Zimbabwe’s capital Harare, has been adjourned until 15 October.