Tag Archives: traffic

Tanzania elephant & rhino populations recover

Tanzania presidency reported elephant and rhino populations have begun to recover after a government crackdown dismantled organized criminal networks involved in industrial-scale poaching and transporting the ivory to China.

A influential Chinese businesswoman running a poaching network on industrial scale, dubbed the “Ivory Queen” was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a Tanzanian court in February for smuggling the tusks of more than 350 elephants, weighing nearly 2 tonnes, to Asian countries. Yang Feng Glan had been charged in 2015 along with two Tanzanian citizens with smuggling 860 pieces of ivory between 2000 and 2004 worth $5.6 million.

“As a result of the work of a special task force launched in 2016 to fight wildlife poaching, elephant populations have increased from 43,330 in 2014 to over 60,000 presently,” the presidency said in a statement this week, underlining the success of the case as a government victory over illicit ivory traffic.

The number of rhinos, an endangered species, had increased from just 15 to 167 over the past four years, the report says.

 

 

Petition to Zuckerberg to ban ivory trade on Facebook

As many other goods ivory trade moved online, and in many cases it is sold via Facebook. The animal defenders have launched a petition addressed to the Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg  to ban ivory trade from social media.

Did you know that thousands of Facebook posts promote the sale of elephant ivory, rhino horns, tiger teeth, and other endangered species’ parts? The easy trade of wildlife body parts on Facebook is fueling the brutal poaching industry, encouraging hunters to keep slaughtering Earth’s most vulnerable animals in horrifically brutal ways.

“Animals endure excruciating deaths at the hands of poachers. Elephants, for example, are attacked with poison arrows, and take an agonizing 15 to 20 minutes to die after being hit. Once the elephant is dead, the poachers hack off their tusks. Because the rest of the elephant is “worthless” to them, the poachers often use battery acid to eat away the elephants’ flesh when they are done.

“Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has admitted that more could be done to stop wildlife traffickers from using the network for their sales, but fails to see the urgency, stating they will solve the problem “over time.”

“Facebook is contributing directly to the rapid extinction of some of the world’s most highly threatened species, and undermining international trade laws designed to preserve animals on the brink of disappearing forever.

“Sign this petition to urge Mark Zuckerberg to treat this dire situation with the weight it deserves, and take swift, effective action to stop all wildlife trade on Facebook.”

Link to the Petition here:

https://ladyfreethinker.org/sign-facebook-stop-selling-poached-animal-parts/

 

EU: 39 Nigerian women rescued from traffickers

The Spanish Guardia Civil in collaboration with the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) from Nigeria and the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA), dismantled a Nigerian organised crime group in one of the largest operations against Trafficking in Human Beings in Europe. This particular criminal network was active across multiple Member States. The investigation began when one of the underage victims filed a complaint with the police; she reported she was coerced into trafficking by voodoo threats in Nigeria. The victims were transferred from Nigeria to Europe via Libya and Italy. Once in Spain, the women were kept in squalid conditions in cave houses in Almeria, where they were exploited in prostitution to pay off the EUR 30 000 debt they owed to the criminal organisation.

The highly active Nigerian criminal network was linked to the EIYE brotherhood, which is known for being one of the most influential confraternities in Nigeria. They operate in clandestine groups all over the world, funding the brotherhood in Nigeria through both licit and illicit activities, in some cases through organised crime and, in particular, trafficking human beings. One of the most important members of the organisation was a well-known DJ in Nigeria, who was arrested when he was returning from his country where he was recording a music video. His main role was to transfer the victims to Spain and organise sexual exploitation in several Spanish provinces. The crime ring transferred and laundered the money using the Hawala system.

Police officers carried out 41 house searches in Alicante, Almeria, Barcelona, Cantabria, Madrid, Malaga, Murcia, Navarra, Seville, Toledo and Vizcaya in Spain and Manchester, UK. The bank accounts used by the organisation to launder more than EUR 300 000 from the illicit activity have been blocked. In total the operation resulted in 89 arrests and 39 victims were safeguarded.

Europol supported the investigation from the beginning by providing analytical support with cross-match reports, funding several operational meetings and deploying one specialist during the action phase in Spain.

Sex-traffic from Nigeria at raise

The International Organisation for Migration reports a sharp raise in the number of African girls being trafficked to Europe, especially from Nigeria.

Over the past three years, IOM Italy has seen an almost 600 per cent increase in the number of potential sex trafficking victims arriving in Italy by sea. This upward trend has continued during the first six months of 2017, with most victims arriving from Nigeria.

This is one of the key findings of a new report published by IOM, the UN Migration Agency, Human Trafficking through the Central Mediterranean Route, which was released in Italian this week (21 July) by IOM’s Coordination Office for the Mediterranean in Rome. A translation from Italian to English will be available soon.

Among other findings, the report states that sexual exploitation increasingly involves younger girls – often minors – who are already subject to violence and abuse on their way to Europe. IOM estimates that 80 per cent of girls arriving from Nigeria – whose numbers have soared from 1,454 in 2014 to 11,009 in 2016 – are potential victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation.

The report is based on data collected by IOM at landing sites and in reception centres for migrants in the regions of southern Italy, where the Organization carries out identification of potential victims and assists those who, once identified, decide to escape their exploiters and accept IOM support.

“Trafficking is a transnational crime that devastates the lives of thousands of people and is the cause of untold suffering,” said Federico Soda, Director of the IOM Coordinating Office for the Mediterranean. “This is a theme we have been working on for years, committing to protect, prevent and collaborate with the authorities dealing with organized crime.”

“The report describes the organization’s activities in the face of this phenomenon: the difficulties in protecting victims and the main vulnerabilities identified among several cases of people who were assisted by the Organization. We also wanted to tell some of the stories of people who have been assisted by IOM staff to highlight the true nature of this painful and hateful form of slavery. We also feel that it is increasingly urgent that data analysis be accompanied by an examination of the market these girls supply, and the growing demand for paid sexual services,” – IOM Project Manager Carlotta Santarossa concluded.