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Tom Mangold reports from Cameroon
Animal Underworld
Sunday 25 February 2001
Reporter Tom Mangold
Producer Martin Wilson
Researcher Sarah Mole


Tom Mangold reports on the impact of the four billion pound a year illegal live animal trade

Stuart Chapman of the WWF's Wildlife Campaign answered your questions on the illegal live animal trade and its impact on the environment.

Panorama investigates the international trafficking in rare and exotic reptiles - a substantial part of a four billion pounds a year gangster's racket in protected wildlife and plants.

Tom Mangold has spent several months investigating the illicit traffic world wide. Once common reptiles are being hunted and stolen for private ownership in Europe and the United States. The trade has already driven scores of these creatures to the point of extinction.

Anson Wong
Animal Smuggler Anson Wong is now in prison
In West Africa he confronts a British dealer with a history of criminal smuggling. In the United States, Panorama reports on the recent smashing of the world's biggest reptile smuggling gang led by Malaysian Anson Wong.

Several former members of the gang, some already convicted, others still awaiting sentence, talk exclusively in the programme revealing details of the international network. United States Federal undercover agents who broke the ring also talk to Panorama.

As the fashion for keeping reptiles as pets continues to grow, Animal Underworld reveals the true and terrible price that is being paid for these small and once innocent pleasures.

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 ON THIS STORY
Panorama's Tom Mangold
"Cameroon, West Africa - in the cool of the evening the hunters come out."
Animal Underworld
The Ploughshare tortoise has been stolen and hunted to the point of extinction

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