Feds Bust Organized Crime Ring Trading in Shark Fins and Drugs

Feds Bust Organized Crime Ring Trading in Shark Fins and Drugs

The New York Times reported late last week that federal prosecutors are pressing charges against a ring of a dozen people and two businesses on opposite coasts for running a multimillion-dollar organization involved in international money laundering, drug trafficking, and illegal wildlife trade in shark fins.

Why This Matters:  As the World Wildlife Fund reports, around 100 million sharks may be killed annually for their fins and many are sold on the black market. Illegal wildlife trafficking is growing because international criminal networks are able to exploit weaknesses and gaps in international law enforcement.

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Clamp Down on Cross-Border Trade Leads to Temporary Decline in Wildlife Trafficking

Clamp Down on Cross-Border Trade Leads to Temporary Decline in Wildlife Trafficking

In the silver linings category, the COVID-19 pandemic’s shock to economies around the globe is also proving to be a disruption to illegal wildlife trafficking by transnational criminal networks, according to a new report from Wildlife Justice Commission, a non-profit organization that investigates and tracks these criminal activities and networks. 

Why This Matters:  Temporary blockages in the black market supply chain are not surprising, and the bad guys will find a way around them — too much money is at stake and these folks are rule-breakers by training.

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Public Opinion in Asian Nations Overwhelmingly Favors Closing Unregulated “Wet Markets”

Public Opinion in Asian Nations Overwhelmingly Favors Closing Unregulated “Wet Markets”

The World Wildlife Fund – U.S. (WWF- US) commissioned a public opinion survey in Hong Kong SAR, Japan, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam in early March and they found that 93% of respondents in the four countries with active illegal wildlife markets support efforts by their governments and health ministries to close all illegal and unregulated markets selling wild animals – Japan was the lone exception.  

Why This Matters:  As Dr. Fauci says if we do not have enough evidence of the global toll unsustainable practices like this are having on our world, then what will it take?  

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Watching Tiger King? Here’s what you should know (and how you can help)

Watching Tiger King? Here’s what you should know (and how you can help)

By: Carson Barylak, IFAW Programs Manager and Meredith Whitney, IFAW Wildlife Rescue Program Officer.  This blog first appeared on the IFAW web site and is reprinted with their permission. The Netflix docu-series Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, has gripped audiences across the world and created countless memes across the internet; the iconic wild animals, complex human […]

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Tech Companies Working to Take Wildlife Trafficking Off the Internet Entirely

Tech Companies Working to Take Wildlife Trafficking Off the Internet Entirely

In a new report entitled “Offline and in the Wild released yesterday by the Coalition to End Wildlife Trafficking Online, the Coalition, convened by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), TRAFFIC and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), reported removing or blocking over 3 million listings for endangered and threatened species and associated products from their online platforms to date.

Why This Matters:  According to the experts, wildlife traffickers take great advantage of the anonymity of the internet to exploit endangered wildlife.

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Wildfires Increasingly Threaten Drinking Water

Wildfires Increasingly Threaten Drinking Water

As climate change lengthens wildfire season, government officials are being faced with a growing threat: ash and fire debris contaminating public drinking water supplies. As the Colorado Sun explained, “Forests, grasslands and other areas that supply drinking water to hundreds of millions of people are increasingly vulnerable to fire due in large part to hotter, […]

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