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@EcoInternet expose resist timber mafia decades



How the mafia is destroying the rainforests

Source:  Copyright 2012, New Scientist
Date:  October 3, 2012
Byline:  Sara Reardon and Rowan Hooper
Original URL: Status ONLINE
Report Photo


It's not as glamorous as cocaine or diamonds, but the illegal logging industry has become very attractive to criminal organisations over the past decade. A new report finds that up to 90 per cent of tropical deforestation can be attributed to organised crime, which controls up to 30 per cent of the global timber trade.

For years, environmental regulators thought that illegal logging was decreasing worldwide. But they were just looking in the wrong places, says Christian Nelleman, author of the 27 September report from the United Nations Environment Programme .

Import and export records don't tell the whole truth, he says. When the report's authors factored in the impact of sophisticated concealment techniques of the kind used by drug cartels, they discovered that rates of illegal logging have actually been rising. The criminals have become simply better at hiding their tracks. Common ploys include forging permits, hacking trade databases, bribing ...

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