Poachers cannot escape

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The increase in poaching incidents on farmland saw owners breaking the law in an attempt to protect their property prompting the Namibia Agricultural Union (NAU) and the Namibia Professional Hunting Association (NAPHA) to inform farmers of their rights.Recently the police wounded a farm worker, while in at least two farmers are under investigation for murder when their action led to the death of suspected poachers.NAU and NAPHA engaged the services of an attorney and compiled and guideline on how they should react when confronted with poachers.Farm-owners and those in charge of property are allowed to use force when the poacher resists the attempt to be arrested or flees when it is clear that an attempt to arrest is made, provided that the force used to affect the arrest is reasonably necessary. Meaning that members should not just shoot at the poacher from the onset, they should firstly fire a warning shot and in the event that it is reasonably necessary to fire additional shots, in order to arrest the poacher.Members are allowed to arrest the poacher trespassing according to the Criminal Procedure Act, which says that: “the owner, or person in charge of the property on or in respect of which any person is found committing any offence, and any person authorised thereto by such owner, occupier or person in charge may without warrant arrest the person so found”, however, members are advised to hand over the poacher to the nearest police station. It is advised that preferably arrests should be done by the police, and not members under normal circumstances. Members are requested to always report the crime of illegal hunting of game or game birds to the nearest police station and to make the report within 48 hours from date of commissioning of the crime.In addition, members are advised to take photos of the poacher and the registration number of the means of transport used by the poacher in the commissioning of the crime as it can be used as evidence in the court.