Notorious worldwide for promoting the hunting and killing of elephants, lions and other African species, South African trophy hunter Riaan Naude has reportedly been shot dead in South Africa this Monday, according to local media outlets.
Naude, who was 55, was found dead next to his vehicle in Marken Road, Limpopo, which includes part of the Kruger National Park wildlife reserve.
South African Police Service spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Mamphaswa Seabi told reporters in a press conference that he was lying with his face up and there was blood on his head and face.
The murder of the South African Trophy Hunter apparently is not linked to his trophy hunting activities – a lucrative activity that remains legal in South Africa. Investigations are underway. “The motive for the attack and the subsequent murder is unknown at this stage,” he added. Naude’s company Pro Hunt Africa, based in northern South Africa, labels itself a “hunting and Eco Safari outfit.” The group organizes paid hunting trips for customers.
Two hunting rifles, clothes, water, whiskey and pyjamas were among items found in his car, South African news media Maroela Media reported.
Naude had previously uploaded images of himself to social media posing with the carcasses of endangered species like lions, elephants and giraffes he had killed.
The non-profit crime-fighting organization the Heritage Protection Group (HPG) said Naude was shot dead by a man who pulled up alongside him when the hunter stopped his car after it overheated. They claimed two men had stepped out of a white Nissan pickup truck, with one shooting him. HPG also added they stole one of his pistols and left.
Naude’s company, based in northern South Africa, labels itself a “hunting and Eco Safari outfit.“We Are Your African Dream!” its website boasts.
The company charges $350 per day to hunt game, $2,500 for a crocodile and $1,500 for a giraffe, according to Pro Hunt Africa’s price list.
In February, South Africa’s Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment announced that country announced an increase in quotas for hunting. Each hunter will allow for the hunting of 10 leopards, 150 elephants and 10 black rhinos in 2022. This announcement irritated many wildlife activities in Africa and around the world.