Thursday, 13 January 2011

Smuggling into the UK

"Switching Channels"

Wildlife trade routes
into Europe and the UK

Thought Georgia might be interested in this; it mainly deals with animal smuggling, but also touches on various other methods of smuggling and illegal trade.

"Like other smugglers, wildlife traffickers go to great lengths to cover their tracks and conceal their offences. They do this in a number of ways, but usually employ three general techniques:

1 disguising illegal items so that they will pass through customs checks as legal imports.
This involves either changing the appearance of the items, or providing fraudulent
documentation, or both;

2 concealing the illegal items within legal shipments;

3 evading customs controls by making wholly illegal shipments;

Other methods may be more blatant – such as shipping to locations where open sale of these
items is not illegal or where enforcement is particularly weak.
The following examples illustrate the lengths to which smugglers will go in order to conceal

• ivory has been dyed to appear like wood and concealed in timber shipments;
• rare bird chicks have been mixed with shipments of hen chicks from India;
• a rhino horn was hidden inside a statue made from plaster of Paris."

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