High-level online side event on environmental crime [fr]
During the 10th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime, France organized an online side event on how to prevent and combat environmental crime.
Entitled “Enhancing international cooperation to prevent and combat environmental crime – a rising, serious and multifaceted transnational organised criminal threat”, this online event took was broadcasted on Tuesday 13 October.
While profits generated by these crimes are high, those involved in such crimes face particularly low risks. This problematic situation is due to a wide range of factors, including a lack of awareness of the devastating, long-term impact of these crimes and their increasing connections with other forms of crime and corruption.
Despite the urgent need to effectively address environmental crime, this phenomenon is often not considered by criminal justice policies as a priority. As a consequence, national legislations are not sufficiently adapted to prevent and tackle this type of crime.
In a context marked by growing and increasingly complex criminal threats, a lack of adequate capacities, equipment and training is yet another challenge for actors across the penal chain.
Organised criminal groups have well identified these vulnerabilities and the potential they provide for the growth and diversification of their activities.
This high-level event seeks, through expert presentations and discussion, to raise awareness on environmental crime, its unprecedented scale and complexity. It also addresses the challenges and threats it poses to the environment, biodiversity, ecosystems, climate, livelihoods, public health, international security, the rule of law, and sustainable development.
This event also highlight the need to enhance the crime prevention and criminal justice responses by using existing international instruments. In particular, the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime (UNTOC) provides a useful framework to criminalise environmental crime and related-offences and to strengthen international cooperation and technical assistance in this regard.
High-level opening sequence
- Introductory remarks by H.E. Mr. Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic
- Welcoming and introduction by H.E. Mr. Xavier Sticker, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations and International Organisations in Vienna
- Ms. Ghada Waly, Executive Director, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
- Mr. Jürgen Stock, General Secretary, INTERPOL
- Ms. Inger Andersen, Executive Director, UN Environment
- Justice Antonio Herman Benjamin, Member of the National High Court of Brazil and Founder of the Global Judicial Institute on the Environment
How can we enhance criminal justices responses to environmental crime? Why is it so important from your perspective as a judge?
- Mr. Chang Joon Lee, the Deputy Head of the Regional Intelligence Liaison Office for Asia and the Pacific, World Customs Organisation
Why should we adopt a comprehensive and holistic approach in preventing and detecting environmental crime? How diversified and sophisticated is this criminal threat? Which links do you observe with other forms of crime and corruption?
- Ms. Anne Brosnan, President of the European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment (ENPE), Chief Prosecutor at the UK Environment Agency
Why are environmental crimes serious crimes from a prosecutors’ perspective? Why is it essential to adopt effective, dissuasive and proportionate sanctions?
- General Jacques Diacono, Head of the Central Office for Combating Environmental and Health-Related Crimes, Ministry of the Interior, France
Why is UNTOC the relevant tool to address environmental crime? Why are financial investigations key?
Conclusive remarks by H.E. Mr. Xavier Sticker, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations and International Organisations in Vienna