06.04.2019 | Combating illegal logging and schematic corruption in this field has given serious results.

The Prosecutor General's Office of the RA has summed up the results of the criminal legal fight against illegal logging in 2018.

It has been found out that during the reporting period 953 cases against the protection of the environment have been registered. 84% of them have been cases of illegal cutting of trees. For comparison, it should be noted that in 2017, 606 cases have been registered, that is to say, the level of crime detection has been increased by more than 32%.

Within the framework of the criminal cases, 68 individuals have been involved as accused. In 2017, the number of criminal cases initiated under the aforementioned crime has made 108.

Significant results of the fight against illegal logging have become possible due to the initiative of the Prosecutor General's Office of the Republic of Armenia to increase the effectiveness of the investigation and in the result of complex measures implemented in the course of close cooperation with the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia, Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Armenia, Hayantar SNCO and the RA Police.

Guided by the plan of comprehensive measures against transportation and prevention of illegal logging, implemented by the RA Police and the RA Ministry of Nature Protection and initiated as a result of a letter sent by the RA Prosecutor General to the RA Police Chief, the relevant documents of the drivers required for wood transportation has been checked. In the case of each illegal logging and illegal export of wood from forestry, operational search measures have been carried out to establish the circle of competent people responsible for preserving the tree or exporting it from forestry.

In each case of illegal logging, revealed in the result of a new criminal policy adopted by the prosecutor’s office and on the instructions of the RA Prosecutor General, the likelihood of participation in the commission of crimes by officials responsible for protecting the forest fund has been the subject of investigation / i.e. revealing the circumstances of possible corruption schemes/.

The damage caused to the state in the result of such crime has amounted to more than 690 million AMD, out of which 28.5 million AMD has been reimbursed.

Criminal cases against 19 individuals have been sent to court, and 7 individuals have been convicted.