Press release | Nov. 1, 2017

First UK prosecution over import and sale of illegal timber welcomed by Global Witness

Global Witness welcomes the first ever prosecution and fine in the UK under laws prohibiting the placing on the market of illegally harvested timber.

Angora 2011 Limited, trading as Lombok, was convicted and fined £5,000 plus costs after pleading guilty on 25 October 2017 at Westminster Magistrates Court. According to the government agency which brought the case, the company was found to have failed to exercise the required due diligence when placing an artisan sideboard from India on the market.1

Jo Blackman, Campaign Leader at Global Witness said: “It is an encouraging sign that, three years after it entered into force, the Timber Regulation has finally resulted in a prosecution and fine. This should send a strong message to other companies that they must conduct checks on the timber they import to ensure it has not been harvested illegally.

“The judge rightly recognised the impact of these offences on the environment and biodiversity. Illegally logging destroys precious forests and can have disastrous effects on local communities. It often linked to conflict and corruption which can blight many countries home to tropical timber.”