Abused, raped, killed, stolen, slaughtered: every year hundreds of animals end up in the criminal hands of Zoomafia, which exploits them for purposes of financial gain, social control and dominance over the territory. We use the term Zoomafia, which we coined more than 15 years ago, to refer to animal exploitation by individuals or groups of people working together or belonging to mafia or Camorra clans.
Nowadays, the Zoomafia makes money both from long-standing illegal activities, such as horse race frauds and clandestine horses racing, illegal abattoirs, livestock theft, poaching and illegal fishing, dog fights, the dog shelter business, as well as from new criminal frontiers, especially animal trafficking via the Internet and puppy trafficking.
Since 1998, with our National Zoomafia Observatory, we have conducted an ongoing analysis of this phenomenon and have published annual Zoomafia Reports. The Observatory collaborates with the police forces, the judiciary authorities and various organisations that monitor criminal and mafia activities.
Our goal is to have a world where no abuse is perpetrated on our friends, the animals, and to this end we take action on a daily basis, to denounce illegal behaviours and raise public awareness.
To defend the rights of animals most effectively, it is essential to monitor the enforcement of the applicable regulations: to this end, we have established a National Animal Guardians Service, staffed by LAV members who are appointed animal guardians after taking a training course and passing the relative exam.
The LAV National Animal Guardians Service works in the following areas:
- Protection of all animals, the environment and the natural heritage;
- Analyses and investigations for the prevention and repression of crimes against animals;
- Activities for the prevention and repression of administrative offences and criminal activities against animals and the environment;
- Collaboration with the authorities in conducting investigations into organisations pursuing illicit goals, and in undertaking animal rescue and environmental preservation initiatives;
- Collaboration in developing and implementing the activities programmed by the Association.