To address the threat of IWT and the involvement of organised crime, the WJC works closely with law enforcement agencies and governments to improve the capacity of the mandated agencies to address IWT. We do this by providing technical and operational support based on needs assessments and requests from our law enforcement partners. This support may include undercover support, the provision of equipment or systems and platforms.
Training and mentoring
We also provide specialised intelligence and investigations training ranging from basic to advanced. We then operationalise what is learned in theory with our mentoring programme. This takes the skill sets learnt in the training and applies them to real life cases. We have had outstanding success using this model, particularly in Thailand and Mozambique.
To date we have provided capacity building activities, training and mentoring in 6 countries. We offer the following training courses and modules:
- Basic Investigations
- Advanced Investigations
- Online Investigations
- Undercover Operations
- Basic Intelligence
- Advanced Intelligence
- Open-Source Research
- Financial Analysis
- Basic Phone Analysis
- Advanced Phone Analysis Course
- Training courses for Judges and Prosecutors
In April 2021, the Wildlife Justice Commission commenced a three-year project generously funded by the Dutch Postcode Lottery to expand our in-house Intelligence Development Unit (IDU) into a global Intelligence Development Unit to combat and prevent wildlife crime.
As the first of its kind, this global IDU supports multinational efforts to fight wildlife crime in real time and will drive the use of intelligence in Southeast Asia. This initiative, called Project Galvanise, is designed to strategically support law enforcement agencies, NGOs, and other stakeholders who hold important portfolios for safeguarding protected landscapes and wildlife in Southeast Asia.
In 2022, the following achievements were realised under this project:
- Eight intelligence analysts have been recruited and funded by Galvanise to support this work in Lao PDR, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.
- We established a project steering committee that met for the first time in December 2022. The purpose of the group is to bring together key stakeholders who are instrumental for the project for strategic decision making, monitoring progress and addressing any challenges.
- We began our intensive training programme for analysts in November 2022 in Malaysia with training provided on topics including open-source intelligence, social media intelligence, online investigations, and the dark web. Three more training courses are planned through to March 2024. After the training, we will support analysts in their agencies with mentoring.
“The Wildlife Justice Commission has been of great help to us in Nigeria, developing the intelligence of customs officers, particularly building on what we had, but we did not know that we could use. And that has changed the story. We don’t stop at just making the arrests anymore. We now continue investigations, using the records to gather more intel and make further arrests. The WJC also assisted in how to build a good case file for prosecution, supported by strong evidence. Thanks to the WJC, we’ve been able to make numerous interceptions and secure convictions.
And I can bet you we’ve only just started.”
Nigeria Customs Service
“Project Galvanise is a groundbreaking initiative distinguished by its technical innovation and forward-thinking vision. Analysts are critical to the effectiveness of any form of law enforcement agency. The Wildlife Justice Commission’s reputation and success is a testament to this. With its clear objectives, the Project has identified and brought together relevant NGO partners involved in countering illegal wildlife trade and relevant regional law enforcement to learn together, establish parity in skills and synchronise priorities and capacity. With an emphasis on sustainability, this will lead to noticeable impact as the project gains traction and develops.”
IWT Programme Manager for WWF Laos, Project Galvanise Steering Group Member
“Project Galvanise has been a fantastic opportunity for my trainee analysts to focus on learning analytical theory and practical tools and techniques, as well as to build relationships with other analysts in the region. This training is invaluable to their development and is a great support to our project, providing specialist training from WJC experts that the analysts might not otherwise have access to. I consider it a privilege to be a Steering Group member and a part of this project.”
Lead Analyst at Sabah Wildlife Department / Danau Girang Field Centre Intelligence Unit, Project Galvanise Steering Group Member
“One may consider illegal wildlife trade a soft underbelly of organised crime, but the network and associated cells perpetrating illegal wildlife trade are hard criminals. The intelligence collected and collated by the Wildlife Justice Commission therefore can be very useful to Law Enforcement Agencies in their investigations into other organised crimes and vice versa.”
Former Assistant Commissioner of Police (Operations) of the Hong Kong Police
“In recent years WJC has had a significant impact on wildlife crime investigations in Vietnam, in an atmosphere where wildlife crime is taken much more seriously by the Vietnam Government. WJC’s capacity on intelligence analysis is highly relevant in the wildlife crime space, is welcomed by a number of enforcement agencies, particularly, Vietnam and Thailand, and has had a strong inputs to the wildlife crime capabilities of enforcement agencies in those countries.”
Regional Lead for Wildlife and Wildlife Crime, WWF Greater Mekong
“This programme will equip our officers with the necessary tools to tackle wildlife crime occurring on online platforms, and more generally how to apply advanced investigation techniques in wildlife crime cases”