Greenpeace has issued a report stating that Amazon loggers have employed computer hackers to help them work illegally. The hackers have been breaking into the system in the Brazilian province of Pará to change the transport permits issued by the government.
As the report explains:
“To be exported from Pará, each shipment of timber requires one of these transport permits, and the volume of timber in each shipment is deducted from the total amount allowed under the company’s forest management plan. Once that amount is reduced to zero, no more transport permits are issued so there’s no profit in felling more trees.”
However, hackers employed by 107 logging and charcoal companies have been falsifying the records to allow the companies to take out more timber than legally allowed. A lot more, in fact – 1.7 million cubic meters’ worth, with a staggering $833 million value.
Police began investigating last year and arrested 30 people, one of whom in still in jail. A total of 202 people face prosecution. Federal prosecutor Daniel Avelino said:
"Almost half of the companies involved in this scam have other law suits pending for environmental crimes or the use of slave labor, amongst other things."
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