Eagle : Wildlife Law Enforcement Briefing
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22 wildlife traffickers were arrested in 3 countries. 13 ivory traffickers were arrested in 4 operations in Gabon including a corrupt gendarme. 4 ivory traffickers were arrested at a coast town on the South of the country. First a Nigerian trafficker was arrested during an attempt to sell 27 kg of ivory. As a head of a large ivory trafficking ring operating in coastal area he had been in a target of investigations for several months. He denounced three more criminals, including a corrupt gendarme at the Naval Brigade, who was providing poachers with ammunition. A logging company officer was arrested trafficking two tusks in the centre of the country.
An ivory trafficker was arrested with 2 ivory tusks, elephant hairs and leopard teeth. 3 traffickers were arrested with 2 ivory tusks, one of them Nigerian, in the East of the country. The Nigerian trafficker, well known to authorities as a longterm criminal, was arrested in a hotel room when he was waiting for his client. He quickly denounced two more traffickers involved in the case, they were arrested afterwards in their houses. 4 ivory traffickers were arrested with 4 tusks in the North-East of the country. First of them, a notorious Nigerian trafficker, was arrested in the act with the contraband. After arriving to the police station, he denounced three other traffickers involved in the illegal activity.
5 ivory traffickers were arrested in Cameroon in two operations. 4 traffickers were arrested with an ivory tusk, pangolin scales and elephant bones. They used motorbikes to transport the contraband as it is very flexible and easy to use for escape when threatened. One of the traffickers has been known by the conservator of the reserve as a major target for arrest. An ivory trafficker was arrested with 7 ivory tusks and hippo teeth as he attempted to move the ivory from its hideout. He transported the contraband concealed inside a truck with cattle from the North where he bought the ivory to East of the country. The operation uncovers a new trafficking route with the opposite direction to that used by ivory traffickers generally. Usually ivory is trafficked from the South and East regions to the North where it crosses border to Nigeria that has not yet put in place strong wildlife law enforcement measures. But this time the ivory was trafficked from the North to the East. The trafficker also dealt in leopard and lion skins as well.
3 traffickers were arrested with 35kg of pangolin scales at the East of Cameroon. First two traffickers were arrested with a bag containing the pangolin scales and were taken to the gendarmerie brigade alongside two bikes they had used for transporting the contraband. The third one escaped leaving behind his bike. When he realized that the bike had been impounded, he arrived to the gendarmerie brigade to bribe for the release of the bike and was immediately arrested.
5 ivory traffickers, arrested in January 2018 in Congo, were prosecuted. 3 of them were sentenced to 3 years in jail, while the two others to 1.5 year suspended. 2 ivory traffickers, arrested in February 2018 in Congo, one of them former military officer, were prosecuted and sentenced to one year in jail both.
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