In 2016, the accused persons, OLINGA BAKBOKE and TCHABO MBAKOP were arrested by elements of the conservation service with trophies of totally protected animal species (Gorillas and Chimpanzees). They were prosecuted before the Court of First Instance, Abong Mbang. They were sentenced to 6 months imprisonment suspended imprisonment term with 3 years and civil damages of 3.190.000XAF. The Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife was displeased with the decision and filed an appeal on the following grounds. That the Presiding judge did not properly apply the provisions of the wildlife law, there was a certain complacency regarding the penitentiary sentence and he did not judge on the exhibits portrayed even though the accused were arrested flagrante delicto with Gorilla and Chimpanzee trophies. It was based on this that the matter was admitted and enrolled before the East Court of Appeal to review the judgement of the lower court.
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Killing of totally protected animal species and illegal detention of trophies of totally protected animal species without legal documents. ( Gorilla and Chimpanzee skulls)
The Court of Appeal acknowledged the grounds of appeal and given that only the civil party filed for an appeal as per the law, the Court of Appeal could only review the civil damages awarded. Based on this, it confirmed the guilt of the accused as charged and sentenced the accused to pay 84.350 XAF for costs and increased the initial civil damages from 3.190.000 XAF to 20.900.000XAF to pay to the state of Cameroon represented by the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife.
Penal Code, sec. 74
Law No. 94-01 of 20th January 1994 to lay down forestry, fisheries and wildlife regulations, secs. 78, 98, 101, 158
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