“The Wildlife Justice Commission has built perhaps the best intelligence and investigative capacity in relation to illegal wildlife trade in the world. It has been instrumental in the arrests of more than 40 wildlife criminals, most of them level 3 criminals or above; it is working with a wide range of law enforcement agencies and has helped improve the seriousness with which wildlife crime is taken in key trading and market countries such as Malaysia and Viet Nam.”
Working to stop wildlife crime
Our vision is a world without wildlife crime because governments effectively enforce the law
We undertake undercover, intelligence-driven investigations, based on law enforcement methodology, with a goal of presenting verifiable, first-hand evidence of wildlife crimes in Case Files or intelligence reports to national governments and law enforcement agencies for action. We identify high-level trafficking suspects through intelligence analysis; publish briefings and reports to help build a broader knowledge base; and share intelligence with governments, to enable more effective enforcement against wildlife trafficking.
We operate within clear procedural lines, our Rules of Procedure, a transparent process designed by criminal justice, law enforcement and wildlife crime experts. The objective of our procedure is to provide a clear trajectory for the review of the Case File, our efforts with national dialogue to persuade a government to act and, where necessary, in conducting a Public Hearing.
Our goal is to support law enforcement action in arresting and successfully prosecuting high-level traffickers as well as disrupting their criminal networks. We offer operational support but also create diplomatic pressure on those governments that are unwilling to act on the evidence, holding a public hearing as a last resort. We will work with law enforcement, policymakers, intergovernmental organisations and non-governmental entities to advance the cause of wildlife justice and over the longer-term help create sustainable solutions.
Within three years of existence, we have conducted 24 wildlife crime investigations in 24 Asian and African countries across the supply chain, including source, transit and destination. We have sparked powerful results, disseminating 205 intelligence reports and helping to secure 70 arrests, focusing on high level criminals, those driving the trade.
“The people in Africa live off the land, they live off the wildlife, they live off the fisheries and they live off forest. Take that away from them and you’ve created poverty overnight. Our future depends on eradicating wildlife crime, with organisations like the Wildlife Justice Commission, working together with governments, other NGOs and on the ground initiatives both locally and globally to make this possible.”
of the Royal Establishment of Barotseland in Zambia
“Despite the best efforts of the international conservation community, losses of elephant, rhino and other threatened African species such as pangolin continue to mount whilst the risks for the criminal bosses remain negligible to non-existent. The long-term solution to illegal wildlife trafficking almost certainly lies in the economic empowerment of rural communities, the transfer of risk from Africa through the entire black market value chain to the demand states and the mobilisation of political will. The systems meant to secure the persistence of Africa’s wildlife are largely failing and this is where the work of the Wildlife Justice Commission is so important. Building a body of evidence that cannot be ignored, suppressed or whitewashed represents a compelling mechanism to achieve accountability at a political level and to start transferring risk to demand states. At African Parks we are watching with great anticipation to see the work of the Wildlife Justice Commission be transformative in the fight against wildlife crime.”