The Wildlife Justice Commission organised a hybrid event, focusing on promoting the effective use of the provisions under the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) and United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) on joint investigations and special investigative techniques to address environmental crimes and the corruption that enables them, on the sidelines of the 32nd Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ). The side event, which took place this week in Vienna, and was supported by United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the United States, also highlighted the role of women in fighting crimes that affect the environment.
This year’s session of the CCPCJ marked a growing momentum for a global agreement against wildlife trafficking in the form of an additional protocol to the UNTOC. Hanny Cueva-Beteta from the UNODC Global Programme on Crimes that Affect the Environment presented the opening remarks and moderated the side-event which included case studies presented by the all-female panel. Additional opening remarks were given by Olivia Swaak-Goldman, the Executive Director of the Wildlife Justice Commission and Rowena Watson, Division Chief, OES/Office of Conservation and Water at the U.S. Department of State. Chotika Arintchai of Thai Customs, Julia Tloubatla of the South African Financial Intelligence Centre, Dorothy Manera of the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Olivia Swaak-Goldman presented case studies demonstrating the use of specialised investigative techniques and joint investigations when investigating and prosecuting environmental crimes and the corruption that enables them.
The case study presented by the Wildlife Justice Commission highlighted how, with their support, specialised investigative techniques, such as phone analysis, were used in an international joint investigation between the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and Mozambique’s National Criminal Investigation Service (SERNIC), as part of the ongoing efforts to dismantle a major Vietnamese wildlife crime network operating globally, and the crucial role that women played in this investigation.
Earlier in the week, the Wildlife Justice Commission shared its insights with the CCPCJ through a written and oral intervention calling for strengthening criminal justice systems to combat crimes that affect the environment.
Missed the event?
Watch the event recording here: