Tri-National Supreme Courts Host ‘Wildlife Justice’ Conference

The Supreme Courts of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam held an online meeting on Thursday and yesterday on Wildlife Justice: Regional Conference of Chief Justices on Wildlife Crime in the Region.

The conference, co-hosted by the Supreme People’s Court of the Lao PDR and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Laos, was convened to strengthen law enforcement, prosecution and conviction rates for crimes against wildlife in the region. Many wildlife crimes in the region and around the world never make it to court, and those who do have historically received light sentences that do not match the seriousness of the crime.

“This is the first time that we have organized such a caliber event that supports cooperation in the adjudication of wildlife crimes,” said Supreme People’s Court Vice President Khamphanh Bounkhakhom. “We are delighted to hear that our counterparts in Cambodia and Vietnam have also committed to strengthening our mutual cooperation on wildlife justice, and I hope we can continue to use existing mechanisms to share our experiences. and lessons learned in the justice sector to tackle wildlife trafficking and treat it as a serious crime.

Seng Teak, Country Director of WWF-Cambodia, said good cooperation between neighboring countries to fight wildlife crime through an effective judicial system can eradicate the illegal wildlife trafficking network and trade unions. from wildlife.

He said transnational wildlife crime not only undermines conservation efforts, but also poses serious threats to national security, economic prosperity and public health.

“WWF stands ready to work with the Cambodian justice system to strengthen legal instruments and increase prosecutions leading to tougher sentences for perpetrators of international wildlife crimes,” he added.

Elna M. Lemons