Trophy Hunter Found Shot to Death: 'Hunter Was Hunted'

A wildlife trophy hunter, who had previously posted on social media about animals he had killed, was found shot to death in South Africa, according to reports.

Riaan Naude was found dead next to his vehicle in the South African province of Limpopo, about 3 miles from Mokopane on June 8, according to a report by the Daily Mirror.

South African Police Service spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Mamphaswa Seabi said: "The man was lying with his face up and there was blood on his head and face."

"Police found two hunting rifles, ammunition, clothes, water, whiskey and pajamas in the deceased's [pick up truck]. It looks like he was on his way to go hunting."

"The motive for the attack and the subsequent murder is unknown at this stage,"

Environmentalist Twitter page Xpose Trophy Killing shared an image of Naude, as well as a link to a Maroela Media report, the independent Afrikaans-language media house that broke the story.

The Protect All Wildlife blog also shared the story and remarked that the "hunter was hunted" regarding Naude's death.

The blog added Naude was a professional hunter and had been denounced by international animal rights organizations because of the large number of wild animals that died at his hands.

According to the Maroela Media report, the Heritage Protection Group, a not-for-profit against rhino poaching, claims Naude stopped his vehicle on the side of the road after it overheated around 5km (3.1 miles) from Mokopane in the Limpopo province of South Africa.

"According to eyewitnesses, a white [pickup truck] stopped next to the man and shot him in cold blood at a short distance, after which the two suspects got out and presumably just look a pistol," the organization said.

"The suspects then jumped into the vehicle and raced in the direction of Marken."

The preliminary investigations found that a cattle herder in the area heard a gunshot and saw a pickup truck speeding away from the scene.

Newsweek has contacted the the Limpopo Mokopane Police Department for comment.

Each of the nine provinces of South Africa regulate the hunting of game birds and fur game through various hunting regulations that are revised annually, according to the South Africa Hunters and Game Conservation Association.

On one of its information pages concerning hunting licenses and permits, it says the purpose of these regulations is to regulate the utilization of game in the interest of protecting natural resources for the future.

Shooting
Stock image of a gun and ammunition. Hunter Riaan Naude was found dead next to his vehicle in the South African province of Limpopo. Getty

"A hunting permit and/or a license is required in all provinces. Different terms and conditions for hunting are applicable for each permit and/or license per province," the page says.

"Some provinces do not require a hunting permit to hunt on exempted farms, while other provinces require licenses or permits even if the landowner has been exempted from the regulations for certain species."

As well as this, hunters must acquire a letter of permission to hunt.

"All provinces require hunters to obtain a letter of permission from the landowner or his representative to hunt on the property. The letter of permission also allows hunters to remove the meat of hunted animals," the information page stated.

"A special permit is required to transport the meat of warthogs and bush pigs.

"Permits are issued per carcass. The meat of cloven hoof animals may not be transported from certain areas—e.g., where foot-and-mouth disease is endemic.

"The meat of these animals must be cooked first, before transporting it outside the region."