World

Zimbabweans who allegedly helped American tourist hunt protected lion appear in court

  • Theodro Bronkhorst, centre, a professional hunter, arrives for his appearance at the magistrates courts in Hwange about 700 kilometres south west of Harare, Wednesday, July 29, 2015. Bronkhorst who was granted $1000 bail has been charged with  failure to prevent an unlawful hunt that resulted in the killing of Cecil the lion by Minnesota dentist, Walter James Palmer, in Zimbabwe.  (AP Photo)

    Theodro Bronkhorst, centre, a professional hunter, arrives for his appearance at the magistrates courts in Hwange about 700 kilometres south west of Harare, Wednesday, July 29, 2015. Bronkhorst who was granted $1000 bail has been charged with failure to prevent an unlawful hunt that resulted in the killing of Cecil the lion by Minnesota dentist, Walter James Palmer, in Zimbabwe. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Bernie the dog sniffs stuffed animals placed at the doorstep of Dr. Walter Palmer's River Bluff Dental office in Bloomington, Minn., Tuesday, July 28, 2015. Palmer, accused of illegally killing a protected lion in Zimbabwe, said Tuesday that he thought everything about his trip was legal and wasn't aware of the animal's status "until the end of the hunt." (Renee Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP)  MANDATORY CREDIT; ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS OUT; MAGS OUT; TWIN CITIES LOCAL TELEVISION OUT

    Bernie the dog sniffs stuffed animals placed at the doorstep of Dr. Walter Palmer's River Bluff Dental office in Bloomington, Minn., Tuesday, July 28, 2015. Palmer, accused of illegally killing a protected lion in Zimbabwe, said Tuesday that he thought everything about his trip was legal and wasn't aware of the animal's status "until the end of the hunt." (Renee Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT; ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS OUT; MAGS OUT; TWIN CITIES LOCAL TELEVISION OUT  (The Associated Press)

  • Theodro Bronkhorst, a professional hunter, arrives for his appearance at the magistrates courts in Hwange about 700 kilometres south west of Harare, Wednesday, July 29, 2015. Bronkhorst who was granted $1000 bail has been charged with failure to prevent an unlawful hunt that resulted in the killing of Cecil the lion by Minnesota dentist, Walter James Palmer, in Zimbabwe.  (AP Photo)

    Theodro Bronkhorst, a professional hunter, arrives for his appearance at the magistrates courts in Hwange about 700 kilometres south west of Harare, Wednesday, July 29, 2015. Bronkhorst who was granted $1000 bail has been charged with failure to prevent an unlawful hunt that resulted in the killing of Cecil the lion by Minnesota dentist, Walter James Palmer, in Zimbabwe. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

Two men arrested for illegally hunting a protected lion are in court in Zimbabwe to face poaching charges.

The men — a professional hunter and a farm owner — are accused of helping an American tourist hunt the lion named Cecil.

The two Zimbabwean men appeared on Wednesday at the Hwange magistrate's court, about 435 miles (700 kilometers) west of the capital Harare. Zimbabwean police said they are looking for the American tourist, identified as Walter James Palmer, who allegedly paid $50,000 to track and kill the animal.

Palmer, a dentist living in the Minneapolis suburb of Eden Prairie, said in a statement that he was unaware the lion was protected, relying on local guides to ensure a legal hunt..