HC Deb 29 January 2001 vol 362 c14W
Sir Paul Beresford

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on the achievements and future of the Wildlife Crime Unit of the Metropolitan police. [147714]

Mr. Meacher

I have been impressed by the achievements of the Metropolitan police in the fight against wildlife crime. They have investigated a number of significant cases, including the recent successful prosecution of a north London taxidermist for illegally trading in large numbers of endangered species. The Metropolitan police have also worked with London's Chinese community in "Operation Charm"—an ongoing initiative to raise awareness of the consequences for conservation of the use of endangered species derivatives in traditional medicines.

How they structure and manage their responsibilities for enforcing wildlife legislation in future is, as now, entirely a matter for the Commissioner to decide.