Newscast Media WASHINGTON—The owners of Out of Africa Adventurous Safaris
were charged October 23 with conspiring to sell illegal rhinoceros hunts in South
Africa, money laundering and secretly trafficking in rhino horns.
The indictment charges Dawie Groenewald, 46, and his brother, Janneman
Groenewald, 44, both South African nationals, and their company Valinor Trading CC
(d/b/a Out of Africa Adventurous Safaris) with conspiracy, Lacey Act violations, mail
fraud, money laundering and structuring bank deposits to avoid reporting
The Lacey Act, the United States’ oldest criminal statute addressing
illegal poaching and wildlife trafficking, makes it a crime to sell animal hunts
conducted in violation of state, federal, tribal or foreign law. CONTINUE TO FULL STORY>>
Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Illegal rhino horn trade has reached the highest levels
since the early 1990s, and illegal trade in ivory increased by nearly 300 percent from
1998 to 2011, according to a new report by U.S. Agency for International
Development (USAID) partner TRAFFIC.
“This report provides critical insights into often violent and complex trade networks
that will help countries target their law enforcement efforts. Wildlife trafficking not
only endangers rhinos, elephants and many other wildlife species, but also threatens
national and international security as well as local livelihoods,” said Eric Postel,
assistant administrator at USAID. FULL STORY>>
Newscast Media LONDON—World leaders meeting in London have agreed to combat
the illegal wildlife trade. They are particularly concerned about the plight of elephants,
rhinos and tigers, prized, respectively, for their tusks, horns and skins.
At a summit in London Thursday, the representatives of 46 countries agreed to new
measures to combat the poaching of endangered species and trafficking of the body
parts of rare animals. CONTINUE TO FULL STORY>>
Newscast Media WASHINGTON—The United States and China have committed to work together to combat wildlife trafficking, the State Department said last week in an announcement.
During the 2013 U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue in Washington, U.S. Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment Robert D. Hormats and Administrator Zhao Shucong of the Chinese State Forestry Administration led a historic breakout session on wildlife trafficking. At the session, experts from multiple agencies met to review efforts to combat the global illegal trade in wildlife and identify areas for increased cooperation.
“The United States is committed to working with China to address this global challenge,” the State Department said.
“In recognition of the economic and security consequences of burgeoning illicit trade networks, the two nations committed to pursue more effective mechanisms for cooperation; strengthen enforcement at the national, regional and global level, including enhanced cooperation among law enforcement agencies; efforts to eliminate the supply and demand for illegal wildlife products; the development of innovative
technologies to advance such efforts; and strengthening international cooperation in wildlife conservation and protection,” the department said.
Wildlife trafficking is a multibillion-dollar illicit trade that undermines security, economic development, health and the rule of law across the globe, the department said. The United States and China are major destinations for trafficked wildlife products.
The United States has been leading an international effort to halt wildlife trafficking, and on July 1, President Obama signed an executive order establishing a presidential task force and calling for a U.S. national strategy to combat wildlife trafficking. The order, in part, calls for the United States to assist foreign nations in building their capacity to combat wildlife trafficking.
“The poaching of protected species and the illegal trade in wildlife and their derivative parts and products (together known as “wildlife trafficking”) represent an international crisis that continues to escalate,” Obama said in the executive order.
“Poaching operations have expanded beyond small-scale, opportunistic actions to coordinated slaughter commissioned by armed and organized criminal syndicates.
“The survival of protected wildlife species such as elephants, rhinos, great apes, tigers, sharks, tuna, and turtles has beneficial economic, social, and environmental impacts that are important to all nations,” Obama said.
Source: State Dept.