Trophy hunter becomes the hunted and finally gets his karma for all the lives he’s taken

In a surreal irony, a hunter found himself hunted.

Last June 9, a cattle herder heard a gunshot. When he investigated the scene, he saw a Nissan truck speeding away and leaving behind a crime scene.

Near the Kruger National Park Wildlife Reserve in Limpopo, South Africa, a vehicle lay quiet. Next to it was a body of a man that they identified as Riaan Naude.

Riaan Naude runs the Pro Hunt Africa.

His company is only one of the firms that organize big game hunting to various clients. Big game hunting is a widely criticized business because it romanticizes the killing of African animals, especially the Big Five – Leopards, African Lion, African buffalo, African elephants, and rhinoceros.

According to news websites, the company posed as a “hunting and Eco Safari outfit” based in the northernmost region of South Africa.

The local police believe that he was executed.

Police Lt. Col. Mamphaswa Seabi said officers found Naude’s body “lying face up”. He also has blood on his face and head.

The 55-year-old was said to stop on the side of the road when his vehicle overheated. That was when a cattle herder followed the gunshot sounds.

The eyewitness account said that a man “shot him in cold blood at close range”. Two suspects were apparently involved.

The local police also said that the motives are unclear until now.

Initial investigations also revealed that nothing was stolen from Naude except for one gun that the suspects allegedly took from him.

They also found two hunting rifles, ammunition, some clothes, and provisions like water and whiskey. His cargo suggested that he was about to go hunting.

Commenters expressed their rage not at the suspects but towards Naude.

On their Facebook page, Naude can often be seen posing with animals that they just hunted. Their kill list includes a variety of animals like zebras, gazelle, and giraffes. The photos also show their clients posing with the carcasses as well.

The company also has posts saying “Let the cull begin” and their tagline “We are your African dream.”

The commenters didn’t mince their words in the comments section.

They were saying lines like “Sickening excuse for human beings,” or mocking them with how “good” they are in killing innocent and harmless animals. A comment went as far as editing his head on a taxidermy plaque akin to animal heads over fireplace mantles.

Others also said that he had it coming and that his murder was a sort of karmic retribution for what he has done to Africa.

Game hunting is still a prevalent problem in the wild.

According to a 2016 article from National Geographic, these sport hunters imported over a million trophies to the US from 2005 to 2016. Over 30,000 pieces are from the African Big Five.

These hunters justify their sport through “tourist money”. Conservationists, however, rebuked this excuse because the needless act puts pressure on already endangered species. They also said that the “tourist money” never had an economic impact to the local communities.

Currently, the US protects lions, elephants, and leopards by heavily restricting trophy imports from such species.

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