Echoing longstanding calls from conservation groups, the World Bank says in a new report today that governments need to look past low-level criminals to tackle illegal logging and to follow the money the illicit trade generates instead.
That trade of illegal logging generates up to $15 billion a year globally, according to the report, titled “Justice for Forests: Improving Criminal Justice Efforts to Combat Illegal Logging,” which draws on examples from Cambodia and other countries.
“Law enforcement needs to look past low-level criminals and look at where the profits from illegal logging go,” it said. …. Sam Sokphal, secretary of state at the Justice Ministry, said the courts could only investigate the cases they receive, and referred further questions to the Ministry of Agriculture.
“Unless they petition or request the ministry to open the case, the Ministry of Justice has nothing to do,” he said. Officials at the Agriculture Ministry and the Forestry Administration could not be reached. …
Zsombor Peter, P.18
http://www.camnet.com.kh/cambodia.daily/ (Note: Infrequently Updated.)