Whether the wildlife laws imposed are strong enough to fight poaching in Kenya?
Kenya has in place a comprehensive legislative framework that criminalises not only wildlife poaching but also importing, exporting, dealing in, and transferring illegal animal trophies. Penalties for violations of the substantive laws and required legal procedures consist of fines, prison terms, and forfeiture of tools used in committing a crime, as well as the fruits of the crime themselves. While certain aspects of enforcing the substantive laws are shared across several government institutions, it is the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), an institution with full prosecutorial powers that bears the primary responsibility for wildlife law enforcement.
I. Introduction…show more content… Specific penalties are those stipulated for the violation of a particular legal provision. In the context of the WCMA (1976), a person convicted of hunting any animal in a national park is subject to a fine ranging from 5000 Kenyan shillings (KES) (around US$58) to 20,000 KES (around US$232), and/or imprisonment ranging from six months to three years, which may include corporal punishment.
However in the new and appealed act, one of the most notable aspects of the WCMA is the dramatic increase in penalties for wildlife-related offences compared to the repealed law.
Under the repealed law, the highest custodial penalty prescribed was ten years, while the highest fine possible was set at KES 40,000 (about US$486).
After the increase of the penalties of the wildlife offences, all the fines were increased for instance an offence relating to hunting of endangered species and threatened species ( elephant & rhinos), Section 79 of the WCMA 2013 states that,
" Any person who commits an offence in respect of an endangered or threatened species or in respect of any sophy of that endangered or threatened species shall be liable upon conviction to a fine of not less than ten million shillings or imprisonment of not less than fifteen years or both such fine and