Our regional compliance activities across Victoria include providing advice to the public on how to comply with Victorian laws, regular patrols, monitoring of permit holders to make sure they abide by licence conditions and investigating reports of alleged wildlife crime.
Severe penalties exist under State and Federal laws for wildlife offences. These reflect the detrimental impact of illegal activities on our environment, wildlife welfare and endangered species.
Current penalties are:
- Any person who imports, keeps or trades in prohibited wildlife from overseas is liable for fines of up to $180,000 and/or 10 years' jail under Commonwealth legislation and up to $76,620 for offences under Victorian law.
- Any person illegally possessing, breeding, trading or displaying native wildlife without a licence is liable for fines up to $7,773 and/or 6 months imprisonment and an additional fine of up to $773 for every additional animal to which the crime relates under section 47 of the Wildlife Act 1975. (Commonwealth legislation refers to offences under section 303EK Environment Protection & Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. Victorian law refers to offences under section 75 of the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994.)
DELWP has achieved significant success with major investigations and prosecutions of environmental offences in recent years.
Compliance cases also regularly go through the magistrate's court system. Infringement notices and fines are also issued for minor offences.