Telephoning Fish: An Examination of the Creative Deviance Used by Wildlife Violators in the United States

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Wildlife poachers throughout the world have developed innovative techniques to commit their crimes and evade arrest by law enforcement. By taking advantage of technological advances as well as legitimate wildlife management practices, the poachers are able to participate in what Cohen and Machalek (1988, 1995) refer to as expropriative crime strategies. This paper documents specific non-conventional poaching techniques used as reported by 22 self-reported poachers, 14 wildlife law enforcement agents and 2 non-poaching hunters who were wildlife crime witnesses. The data, collected in semi-formal interviews, also present the different perceptions of poaching frequency and methods by both criminals and law enforcement officers.



wildlife crime, environmental criminology, rural-specific crime, fish and game law, wildlife poaching


International Journal of Rural Criminology, v1, n1 (December, 2011), p. 23-39