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Illegal trading in ivory leaves man from Spalding facing possible prison term after court hearing today (Wednesday)

A Spalding man faces a possible jail sentence after pleading guilty to buying unworked sections of illegal elephant tusks.

Slawomir Kazmierczak (55), of Redthorne Close, also admitted to trading in illegal ivory jewellery which he bought on the online buying and selling site eBay.

Kazmierczak will be sentenced in October after a judge said the culling of elephants for profit "could not be tolerated."

Lincoln Crown Court. (7178414)
Lincoln Crown Court. (7178414)

During a hearing at Lincoln Crown Court today (Wednesday), Kazmierczak pleaded guilty through a Polish interpreter to nine charges relating to the protection of endangered species under laws passed in 1997.

Two of the charges relate to Kazmierczak buying illegal sections of unworked elephant tusks between May 2013 and May 2017.

He also admitted buying three other banned items, including an ivory bracelet and ivory figurine, as well as four charges of fraudulently evading a prohibition on other ivory items including a necklace, pendent, bangle and three ivory brushes.

Lincoln Crown Court news. (15113724)
Lincoln Crown Court news. (15113724)

All the charges occurred between May 2013 and April 2017.

In a police interview, Kazmierczak claimed he thought the material was bone, the court heard.

But his barrister accepted that his offending passed the custody threshold.

Judge John Pini QC described the case as "highly unusual" and said he needed more time to consider the exact role played by Kazmierczak, along with other, similar legal cases.

Lincoln Crown Court (6697871)
Lincoln Crown Court (6697871)

"This is a very unusual area which is new to me," Judge Pini said.

"These are serious offences for evident reasons and normally attract deterrent sentences as culling elephants for profit is not to be tolerated."

Kazmierczak was granted bail and will be sentenced at Lincoln Crown Court on October 16.

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