The Global Initiative Network


Pauline Verheij

Independent Wildlife Crime Specialist, EcoJust

Pauline Verheij is an independent wildlife crime specialist with nearly 20 years of experience tackling environmental and wildlife crime. An environmental lawyer by training, Pauline has applied her skills in a variety of positions in the public, private and NGO sector.

As a legal advisor with the Dutch police’s Serious Environmental Crime Unit she provided advice in complex investigations of serious environmental crimes, including of waste management fraud, illegal timber trade and wildlife crime. As a policy advisor on wildlife crime with the Dutch public prosecutors’ office she advised prosecutors in wildlife crime cases, drafted investigation and prosecution strategies and conducted strategic analyses, including on illegal bird trade and bird of prey persecution. In this role she was also a member of INTERPOL’s wildlife crime working group and served as a secretary to INTERPOL’s Environmental Crime Committee between 2007 and 2009.

In 2009 Pauline moved to Malaysia where she managed TRAFFIC’s tiger trade programme, coordinating anti-tiger trafficking efforts across Asia and pioneering an analysis of illegal tiger trade in Asia. In 2012 she started her own consultancy EcoJust, providing advice on wildlife crime issues to international NGOs and intergovernmental organisations (including the World Bank and the European Commission).

As a consultant Pauline has conducted a wide variety of studies on topics ranging from wildlife cybercrime, jaguar and other wildlife trafficking in Bolivia and Suriname, ivory and rhino horn trafficking in The Netherlands, Rosewood trafficking in Madagascar and the interaction between wildlife crime and insecurity in Sub-Saharan Africa. She was furthermore involved in the design and establishment of the Wildlife Justice Commission (WJC) based in The Hague. As the WJC’s Senior Legal Investigator she was responsible for compiling the evidential case file in their first investigation of a transnational organized wildlife crime network in Vietnam. Between 2018 and 2019 Pauline worked with IFAW as their Senior Program Manager Wildlife Crime, where she coordinated IFAW’s wildlife crime program and served as their interim Program Director for a year.

In July 2019 Pauline moved back to independent consulting with a focus on wildlife and forest crime research.

Pauline is a member of the IUCN Commissions on Environmental Law and Education and Communication and was a board member of the Moroccan Primate Conservation foundation from 2013 until its dissolution in 2019.



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