Outlawed eel exporters exposed by Countryfile

107389574 glass eels - Outlawed eel exporters exposed by Countryfile
Glass eels
Image caption Places eels are one of the UK’s most endangered species species

Dealers thinking about illegally export European eels along the UK have been exposed by BBC Countryfile.

Posing a UK fisherman who had legally viewed the eels on the River Severn in Gloucestershire, presenter Joe Crowley was approached by Chinese moreover Russian buyers and a UK exporter.

They were prepared to make up to seven times the normal hit price if the eels could be mailed out of the EU.

Your export ban on the endangered kinds has been in place since 2010.

Organised crime gangs are really said to be smuggling about 350 thousand live baby eels – or sometimes ‘glass’ eels – every year to successfully Asia, where they are farmed as well sold as a delicacy.

Andrew Kerr, of the Sustainable Eel Group said the illegal work in glass eels was predicted to be worth about £3bn a whole year.

Mr Kerr stated to the BBC: “It’s the most trafficked animal by number and by true worth.

Image caption The Safe Eel Group’s Andrew Kerr documented the illegal trade was likely to be worth about £3bn every 12 months

“It leaves here at one Euro each and then three years later, having been grown in the 900 eel farms of inland China and taiwan, it’s worth 10 Euros you would like to and that’s pretty tempting.

“This is the greatest wildlife crime worldwide. ”

The forbidden trade has previously been related to stocks in France and The country but now smugglers have turned perfect attention to the UK, where glass eels can only be caught by gain fishermen.

Countryfile’s sondage team posted an advert on an for the web trading website, offering live eels caught in the River Severn out there.

One buyer supply by china manufacturer offered more than £1, 000 concerning kilo for the eels to be freighted to Malaysia, despite acknowledging an export would be illegal.

The current price for eels traded legitimately within the EU is about £150 per kilo.

Every other buyer from Russia asked for the most important catch to be sent to Lithuania totally legally where he would then arrange for finally, the eels to be moved over the edge to Russia.

The team was also approached by a UK-based commodities trader who said he had a client in Asia who was struggling to find glass eels to be exported for you to South Korea.

That later confronted, he said your ex knew that it was illegal to move eels, that he did not have a shopper in South Korea and that he had only “speculating”.

Image caption Ian Guildford of the National Wildlife Crime Unit described it as a “major crime”

He integrated that he had never exported mirrors eels and had no intention of accomplishing so.

Since the the 70s, the numbers of eels reaching Western world is thought to have declined by about 90%.

Correct they are protected as an endangered type by the Convention on International Deal in in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

They are also named on the International Association for Conservation of Nature’s Trama List of Threatened Species.

But campaigners are concerned that a deficiency of monitoring is allowing glass eels to be moved between EU user states and beyond, with limited number of traceability checks enforced or vintage recordings kept.

Ian Guildford, of the National Wildlife Crime Space, said it was often hard to tell other enforcement agencies to take of the crime seriously.

He said: “This is real crime and, once we can get customers to understand the severity of the problem, of which we might get somewhere. ”

See the full scenario on Countryfile on BBC1 coming from 19: 00 BST on dezesseis June and afterwards on the iPlayer.

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