Advance warning of what promises to be a fantastic new book on combating international wildlife crime. The author is John M Sellar OBE, FRGS, who until he took early retirement in 2011 was Chief of Enforcement Assistance, CITES Secretariat, Geneva, Switzerland.
John and I worked closely together in the early 1990s, he being an inspector and wildlife crime officer in Grampian Police, while I was inspector and wildlife crime officer in neighbouring Tayside Police. John applied for and became chief of enforcement at the CITES Secretariat in 1997. Since that time he has engaged in more than 230 missions to over 65 different countries and territories, including specialised law enforcement assessment missions regarding the illegal trade in caviar, great apes, ivory, oran utans, rhinoceros, Tibetan antelope and tiger that resulted in changes to national legislation and enforcement policies in several countries.
John has now recounted some of his experiences in his book The UN’s Lone Ranger: combating international wildlife crime. The book will be published at the end of January by Whittles Publishing, Dunbeath, Caithness, Scotland, KW6 6EG, UK.
John Scanlon of CITES provided the Foreword for John’s book, an extract from which is below:
John blazed a trail for the Secretariat in the fight against wildlife crime. He meticulously helped CITES Parties respond to threats, build enforcement capacity, and develop a vast body of decisions and resolutions on enforcement. Mission by mission, report by report, meeting by meeting for over 14 years John helped build the foundations that continue to guide our enforcement work today. … He is well-known for his story telling prowess, as is reflected in this book, which is a ‘warts and all’ account of his ‘on the road’ experiences from CITES missions across 60 countries. This offers us a very personal insight into John’s assessment of the challenges we face, and the promising opportunities that exist, in the fight against wildlife crime.
I will be reviewing John’s book in February and will publish my review on this blog.