Working Group 1- Wildlife crime

A working group exploring the major issues of interpretation, practical application, evidence gathering and quantification of damage to the environment that hinder efficient and effective prosecution and adjudication of non-compliance with EU wildlife laws.

Focussing on:

  • the Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC)
  • the Birds Directive (2009/147/EC)
  • CITES Regulations (EC/338/97, EC/792/2012 and EC/865/2006)

The Wildlife Crime working group comprises members from across Europe, all involved in the prosecution of wildlife crime. 

This group looks at best practice examples of wildlife crime prosecution through the consideration and sharing of case studies using a variety of media (e.g. a 'compendium of cases'; and/ or a workshop with presentations from group members demonstrating successes and challenges experienced in the complex area of enforcement).

It builds on the LIFE-ENPE project Wildlife Crime Working Group (WG1) which operated from 2017-20 and which produced:

  • a written report on the barriers and solutions to effectively tackling wildlife offences (eg under the Habitats Directive, Birds Directive or CITES Regulations), in particular the issues prosecutors and judges encounter in practice in interpretation, practical application, evidence gathering and damage quantification
  • presentations on the working group’s interim and final findings concerning the matters set out above
  • a suite of training materials addressing the matters set out above, specifically focussed on the Illegal Killing Taking and Trade in Birds and including:
    • training presentations
    • case studies
    • guidance on minimum standards and best practice

The WG1 outputs were put together following collated information from members on:

  • Best practices in in the practical work of prosecutors when dealing with wildlife crimes
  • Sentencing guidelines regarding wildlife crimes
  • Requests for training in any area relating to wildlife crimes
  • Cases for the ENPE crimes database.The case itself in Word or PDF, an english summary of the specific case and information on what prosecutor to contact for further information

Final Report - August 2020

The Final Report for LIFE-ENPE Working Group 1 (Wildlife crime) was published in 2021 and is available as a pdf below. The report includes details of all of the groups activities since December 2017 as well as details of all outreach activities including awareness raising and training. The main deliverable from the group has been the information from the Segovia workshop of May 2018, which is also available separately as a pdf from the list of outputs below.

Introductory and General information from the LIFE-ENPE Wildlife Group & UNEP CMS on Illegal Killing, Taking and Trade in Birds (IKB) from the Segovia Workshop available 

We are pleased to share with you the introductory and general information from the Segovia workshop (09-11 May 2018) in the form of two pdfs of the PowerPoint slides (Parts I & II), available for download below. It will inform a wider public of key introductory and background information on IKB in the Mediterranean and the work of ENPE (including the LIFE-ENPE project) and (UNEP) CMS on the subject.

More detailed training in this area is available for specialists to deliver to their prosecuting colleagues as needed.

LIFE-ENPE Wildlife Group & UNEP CMS Workshop on the illegal killing taking and trade in migratory birds; Segovia, Spain 09-11 May 2018 

The Wildlife Working group joined forces with the United Nations Environment Programme Convention on Migratory Species (UNEP CMS), in holding a  two-day workshop for prosecutors and inspectors on tackling the illegal taking and trade in migratory birds. The focus of the workshop was the Mediterranean region, and a total of 37 prosecutors, wildlife inspectors and specialists in wild migratory bird conservation attended from countries in this area of Europe as well as Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Israel and the Lebanon.

Presentations, where available, are accessible for download and promulgation amongst our members and stakeholders and included updates from the European Commission's Directorate-General for Environment, Specialist Environmental Prosecutors from across Mediterranean Europe,  specialist anti-poaching police inspectors and the United Nations Environment Programme Convention on Migratory Species. The discussion sessions were particularly valuable, offering opportunities to share good practise and ensure more consistent approaches in the prosecution of crimes against this endangered group of birds. 

The final summary report is now available for download as a pdf - please see below

The link below provides more information:

LIFE-ENPE Working Group Interim reports (First Stage, 2017 and Second Stage, 2018)

For more details on the Working Group activities from 2017, including the presentation provided by the group to the annual conference in Oxford 2017; and for 2018, including information on the Segovia workshops, please see the interim reports below.