Harnessing the Power of Whistleblowers: Combating Wildlife Crime

February 9, 2017 11:00 am — 12:30 pm
Washington, DC (and webinar)

An ELI Public Seminar

There is a strong global movement to combat wildlife trafficking and protect endangered species from overexploitation and the United States is taking its international obligations and commitments seriously. In 2013, President Obama issued Executive Order 13648, recognizing wildlife trafficking as an “international crisis that continues to escalate.”  Whistleblowers play a crucial role in prosecuting wildlife traffickers. However, the majority of potential whistleblowers, in any situation, never come forward. Congress addressed this issue by creating whistleblower reward laws, the successes of which have been profound, strengthening the ability of the government to detect and prosecute crime. In total, whistleblower rewards laws have resulted in over $50 billion in fines and penalties and over $3.5 billion in compensation to whistleblowers. Both the Lacey Act and Endangered Species Act include language providing monetary incentives to persons who disclose information about wildlife crimes, but these provisions have not been effectively implemented.

In this seminar, experts explored how whistleblowers around the world can report wildlife crime and receive monetary awards under U.S. laws like the Lacey and Endangered Species Acts.

Learn about the National Whistleblower Center’s work to combat wildlife trafficking at www.whistleblowers.org/wildlife.

Crawford Allan, Senior Director – Wildlife Crime, TRAFFIC, World Wildlife Fund
Stephen M. Kohn, Co-founder & Executive Director, National Whistleblower Center
Alexander "Sascha" von Bismarck, Executive Director, Environmental Investigation Agency

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