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16 January, 2017

Whistleblower Group Urges Government Agencies to Implement Wildlife Whistleblower Reward Laws

Washington, D.C. January 17, 2017. The National Whistleblower Center will present testimony today at an official meeting of Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking held at the Department of Interior. The NWC’s testimony advocates for the Departments of Interior, Commerce, Treasury and Agriculture to implement long standing but underutilized whistleblower reward laws.

Five major anti-trafficking laws include whistleblower reward provisions: The Lacey Act, the Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Act, the Antarctic Conservation Act, the Endangered Species Act and the Wild Bird Conservation Act. These laws all mandate the agencies compensate whistleblowers who often risk their life to protect these iconic species.  

Stephen M. Kohn, a partner in the law firm of Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto, LLP, who also serves as the Executive Director of the NWC, stated, "Today’s testimony outlines the urgent need for the four responsible agencies to incentivize Whistleblowers. Reward programs are now the back bone for the detection of fraud, foreign bribery, and ocean pollution. Once implemented, the reward programs will have a revolutionary impact on the detection of illegal wildlife trafficking." 

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