Kimon de Greef is a freelance journalist from Cape Town with a particular interest in illicit resource trades. He has written for the New York Times, Guardian, National Geographic and Al Jazeera, among other international publications; locally, he contributes regularly to GroundUp News. He began researching abalone poaching in 2012 as part of a master’s degree in conservation biology at the University of Cape Town. Since then he has written about illegal diamond diggers, donkey skin smugglers, marijuana farmers and mountain muggers. This is his first book.
Flares exploded in the sky. Stun grenades fired into the water. From the dunes came a volley of gunshots. It was an Operation Neptune sting. Without thinking, Shuhood dived into a big pile of kelp, pulling the fronds over his face. He could hear the men being beaten up, the thud of boots striking bodies. Then somebody kicked him hard.nnLocked up for poaching abalone, Shuhood Abader began writing his life story. For over fifteen years, he had been a small cog in a criminal industry stretching from the Cape underworld to China’s luxury seafood market. As abalone – perlemoen, perly – vanishes from the South African coast, Shuhood’s first-person account takes us right into the heart of the crisis.