Spotlight Dubai: A Dutchman turns a hobby into a crime

The United Arab Emirates’ Ministry of Environment and Water has filed complaint against the man after it sent their inspectors to his house in Dubai not only once but twice. The ministry’s inspectors found the man trading in fighting roosters, lemurs, toco toucans and other CITES species.

Six years ago, the Dutch manager started his work with animals as a hobby but later turned importing most of species from Holland and selling them to the markets together with his wife.

Apparently he used to keep them on his farm and selling them later. He even had no problem selling sick animals.

According to the court, the man left dead animals in cages and sick animals without proper medical care.

He is accused of practicing illegal wildlife trade, selling without license, violating UAE federal Law No. 11 of 2002, abusing animals and failing to provide the medical care to sick animals. The man has denied all the charges.

IFAW’s office in Dubai is working closely with government bodies in the UAE to combat wildlife trafficking. Recently IFAW conducted a two-day training course on the prevention of wildlife trafficking in cooperation with the UAE Ministry of Environment and Water. Eighteen participants were from the ministry.


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Azzedine Downes,IFAW President and CEO
President and Chief Executive Officer
Céline Sissler-Bienvenu, Director, France and Francophone Africa
Director, France and Francophone Africa
Dr. Elsayed Ahmed Mohamed, Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Regional Director, Middle East and North Africa
Dr. Joseph Okori
Regional Director, Southern Africa and Program Director, Landscape Conservation
Dr. Maria (Masha) N. Vorontsova, Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Faye Cuevas, Esq.
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Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
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Executive Vice President
Matt Collis, Director, International Policy
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Pauline Verheij, Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Program Manager, Wildlife Crime
Peter LaFontaine, Campaigns Manager, IFAW Washington, D.C.
Campaigns Manager, IFAW Washington, D.C.
Rikkert Reijnen, Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Program Director, Wildlife Crime
Country Representative, Germany
Country Representative, Germany
Staci McLennan, Director, EU Office
Director, EU Office
Tania McCrea-Steele, Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Project Lead, Global Wildlife Cybercrime
Vivek Menon, Director of IFAW partner, Wildlife Trust of India
Senior Advisor to the CEO on Strategic Partnerships & Philanthropy