Merseyside Police Wildlife Crime Officer (WCO), Detective Constable 6571 Kenny Dummigan, came into post December 2008.
The illegal trade in endangered animals and plants is robbing the planet of some of its most precious species. With high rewards, it attracts criminal gangs who steal to order, using corruption, violence, extortion and even murder to smuggle them across borders. Interpol have estimated that the world-wide trade is worth US $5billion each year and is on the increase.
In the UK the responsibility for enforcement of the 150+ laws protecting wildlife rests with the police service. Wildlife legislation may be unfamiliar to most police officers and CPS prosecutors, so the government has recommended that each force have at least one full-time WCO. Offences include illegal trade in endangered species; killing or taking of protected species from the wild (e.g. birds of prey, rare plants); collecting the eggs of wild birds; illegal hunting, badger persecution and unlawful destruction of breeding sites, bat roosts and other protected habitats. The UK networks of Police WCOs and HM Revenue and Customs officers are supported by the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW), which is a multi-agency body comprising representatives of all the organisations involved in wildlife law enforcement in the UK. It provides opportunities for statutory and non-Government organisations to work together, sharing expertise to combat wildlife crime.
The Merseyside WCO is based at the Anti-social Behaviour Unit at Wavertree Road Police Station, Liverpool L7 1RJ and can be contacted on 0151 777 5441 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org