Illegal Bushmeat Being Smuggled Through Paris
Based on seizures from searches carried out over 17 days at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris, officials confiscated 188 kilograms of illegal bushmeat from nine people. In total, 11 species of animals were found, including two types of primates, two kinds of crocodiles, and three types of rodents. Four of these animals were listed as protected species.
During this 17-day study, 134 passengers arriving on 29 flights from 14 African nations were searched. Based on the 188 kilograms of illegal bushmeat seized from nine passengers, experts estimate that up to 270 tons of illegal bushmeat could be coming through Paris’s main airport each year.
The lack of detection, seizing, and penalties for importing these illegal animal products contributes to the large volume of bushmeat being transported. In addition, the rewards for transporting such products are typically high, which lends even more encouragement to the practice.
Researchers suggested that offering incentives to customs officers, increasing penalties for illegal importation of products, and raising awareness among passengers that bringing products into the European Union is prohibited might decrease this illegal activity.