Construction of Blame and Offending
In common with defining and determining who is a victim within the complicated chain of wildlife trafficking, unpicking who is the offender and therefore who is held responsible can also be challenging. This chapter introduces the idea that there is also a hierarchy of offending. In terms of the offender, there are those who might be consider ‘blameless’ due to the circumstances under which they illegally poach or harvest wildlife. Who can blame the impoverished villager for killing endangered wildlife to eat or to get money for food? Within this spectrum though there are also the smugglers — those middlemen, corrupt law enforcement and government officials, and transportation employees — who move wildlife along this illicit chain. There are also those people overseeing and organising parts or all of the smuggling process. These might be transnational organised crime groups as well as individual criminals. Not to be overlooked in wildlife trafficking perpetration are the processors who sculpt decorative corals and make traditional medicines, the sellers at markets and restaurants and of course the buyers, all of who are playing some role within a wildlife trafficking operation. There are then differing levels of blame, responsibility and ‘evil’ that can be attached to the different actors because of their differing motivations and levels of engagement in committing this wildlife crime.
KeywordsBlack Market Organise Crime Criminal Network Wildlife Crime Organise Crime Group
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.