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US wildtrade laws very loose in most states

May 19, 2014
Vice is an international magazine focused on arts, culture, and news topics. Founded in 1994 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Vice is an international magazine focused on arts, culture, and news topics. Founded in 1994 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Vice has done a 17 minute video that outlines shocking trends and profiles coming out of the wildtrade in the US.

Jurisdiction for wildlife trade in the US is not federal but run by individual states across America, with some states having no laws at all, the video shows.

A law enforcement expert argues that the chance of being caught is limited by police lack of knowledge of endangered wildlife, while if offenders are caught the penalties are very minor considering the money involved.

Vice visits a rescue centre for wild cats in the US with more than 200 cats.

The owner of the wildcat rescue centre, who once owned a pet leopard for nearly 20 years, says some of the wildcats have been bred in puppyfarm-like operations. while most are bred from existing  stocks in the US  like circuses etc.

The Vice reporter then goes to an auction in a state with no laws  on the sale of endangered wildlife as per CITES where endangered species are auctioned to film with hidden cameras.

They discover that auction buyers are often from ranches where wealthy US hunters can buy the wildlife to hunt and kill.

Recorded on a secret camera one of the wildlife sellers at the auction says he believes the hunting business actually helps endangered species survive.

http://www.vice.com/vice-profiles/backyard-exotics

The US Obama government this year has made several statements to address the wildtrade crisis that faces particularly elephants including a national strategy combating wildlife trafficking but issues with state jurisdictions still appear to be loopholes for traffickers.

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From → Wildtrade

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