INTERPOL needs your help to catch these environmental crime kingpins!

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Public Domain Interpol

Operation Infra Terra

The International Criminal Police Organization, better known as INTERPOL, needs your help. They've recently launched an operation called "Operation Infra Terra" (what would a global search for fugitives be without a cool code name? 'Infra' stands for 'International Fugitive Round Up and Arrest'). The primary goal is to catch 139 fugitives wanted by 36 member countries for a variety of environmental crimes, including illegal fishing, wildlife trafficking, illegal trade and disposal of waste, illegal logging and trading in illicit ivory.

Promisingly, it's the first INTERPOL fugitive operation targeting individuals specifically wanted for crimes concerning the environment. Let's hope there are many more, because we're not talking about small crimes. According to research by the U.N., the trade in wildlife crime is said to be worth around $213bn per year. Add to that some of the other major crimes like illegal logging, and all the damage caused by illegal waste disposal, and this is a huge burden for everyone, not just the targeted animals and ecosystems.

UN/Public Domain

During the first phase of the operating, INTERPOL is focusing on 9 fugitives, asking the public for any information at all that could help locate them (you can share information with your local police or directly with INTERPOL).

“Even the smallest detail, which you might think is insignificant, has the potential to break a case wide open when combined with other evidence the police already have,” said Ioannis Kokkinis, Criminal Intelligence Officer with INTERPOL’s Fugitive Investigative Support unit which is coordinating Infra Terra. “Sometimes all it takes is a fresh pair of eyes to bring new momentum to an investigation and provide the missing clue which will help locate these wanted individuals, some of whom have been evading justice for years,” he added.

Here are the bastards:

Interpol/Public Domain

The 9 fugitives are: Adriano Giacobone; Ahmed Kamran; Ariel Bustamante Sanchez (involved in illegal tuna fishing in protected waters off Costa Rica); Ben Simasiku; Bhekumusa Mawillis Shiba; Feisal Mohamed Ali (alleged to be the leader of an ivory smuggling ring in Kenya); Nicolaas Antonius Cornelis Maria Duindam; Sergey Darminov; Sudiman Sunoto.

“We believe that the capture of these criminals on the run will contribute to the dismantlement of transnational organized crime groups who have turned environmental exploitation into a professional business with lucrative revenues,” said Stefano Carvelli, Head of INTERPOL’s Fugitive Investigative Support unit.

UN/Public Domain

Via Interpol, BBC

Tags: Animals | Animal Welfare | Conservation

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