Forest Elephant Mission: A Rebalance Earth Partnership Project
The poaching of elephants in Africa has a ripple effect that reaches around the world and impacts you and me. When forest elephants are killed for their ivory, the old growth forests that they garden lose much of the biodiversity upon which human life depends, along with the forest’s full capacity to protect us from climate change.
21 August 2020
The explosives factory that was meant to receive the Rhosus’ cargo also shares an address with ExploAfrica, a company co-owned by the Vieira family. Confidential corporate and government documents shared by the Conflict Awareness Project, a U.S.-based nonprofit, show that ExploAfrica and its affiliates were investigated by South African and Portuguese authorities for obtaining U.S. and Czech weapons that later ended up in the hands of rhino and elephant poachers in South Africa’s Kruger National Parks on the border with Mozambique.
2019: Follow The Guns: An Overlooked Key To Combat Rhino Poaching and Wildlife Crime
A CAP Report by Kathi Lynn Austin
Four-year, six-country investigation implicates gunrunners and corrupt officials driving rhinos to the brink of extinction.
Follow The Guns
On Sunday, June 24, 2018, Carte Blanche, a premiere African current affairs program, aired Follow The Guns, co-produced by CAP's Executive Director Kathi Lynn Austin. In the TV documentary, arms trafficking investigator Kathi Lynn Austin races against time to expose the suppliers and manufacturers of guns and bullets recovered at rhino poaching crime scenes.
How to hunt down the world’s most dangerous arms dealers
The Conflict Awareness Project (CAP) is an international non-profit dedicated to investigating, documenting, and bringing to justice major arms traffickers, war profiteering networks, and transnational criminal operations that fuel war, conflict, and natural resource exploitation around the globe.
Support our daily work and help bring major arms traffickers to justice, save lives, and help build a more just and peaceful world.
How Did Rifles With an American Stamp End Up in the Hands of African Poachers?
The question is at the heart of investigations by Congress and federal agencies into whether an American gun manufacturer is entangled in the shadowy world of arms smuggling and wildlife poaching.
Four-year probe cracks rhino-poaching gun racket
A gun manufacturer in the Czech Republic is implicated in flooding Africa with thousands of high-calibre hunting hunting rifles. Now poachers are even more deadly
The Pillage of Eastern Congo Gold:
A Case for the Prosecution of Corporate War Crimes
A CAP Briefing Report by Kathi Lynn Austin
Results of Ms. Austin's nine-year international investigation of an unlawful conflict gold enterprise originating in the eastern DRC. Foreign companies have taken advantage of armed conflict to make millions of dollars in illegal profit, while incentivizing war and widespread atrocities.
She Hunted History’s Worst Arms Dealers. Now She’s Taking on Rhino Poachers.
Kathi Lynn Austin is on a global chase to stop the flow of guns threatening to wipe the rhinoceros off the face of the Earth.
Doc Film Follows the International Trail of "Dirty Gold"
Follow CAP ED Kathi Lynn Austin as she visits gold mines in DRC, collects evidence from smugglers in Uganda, and works to bring a legal case against Swiss processors and other parties.
Watch the free trailer or see the complete doc for a small fee, and support this important work.
"A Short Film About Guns" Wins
Best Short at Tribeca
Directed by Minos Papas, the film features CAP founder Kathi Lynn Austin, former child soldier Ishmael Beah, war photographer Paul Conroy, and Rear Admiral (ret.) Stuart Platt, who recount their experiences with the black market trade in areas of conflict and how the unlawful flow of weapons across the globe facilitates loss of life and devastation.
UK Authorities Called to Act on “Blood Gold” Case Following Ruling
February 5, 2014 – A key ruling by the Swiss Federal Criminal Court gave momentum to a war crimes case against Swiss refining giant, Argor-Heraeus SA, alleged to have laundered millions of dollars of looted gold from the DRC. The three NGOs behind the case, call on the UK and Jersey Channel Island authorities to swiftly investigate the two British firms that were the primary traders of the gold at issue.
UN and Control Arms Fete Passage of Landmark Arms Trade Treaty
CAP ED Kathi Lynn Austin was honored to be selected by Control Arms for inclusion in their 50 Celebrating 50 initiative, featuring photos and quotes from 50 political leaders, survivors, and campaigners who have worked to make the ATT a reality. The exhibit was displayed at UN headquarters in New York in Fall 2014, and is currently available for viewing online.
NY Times OP-ED: Stopping the
Trade in Death
CAP ED Kathi Lynn Austin discusses her role in helping put notorious international gun trafficker Viktor Bout behind bars, as well as the state of arms trafficking.
INTERVIEW: Intl Weapons Trafficking Ring Exposed in Mauritius
CAP ED Kathi Lynn Austin speaks about an international gunrunning operation, centered in Mauritius, which was found to covertly transport weapons and ammunition into UN-sanctioned conflict zones. Austin discusses CAP’s investigation into this gunrunning ring, as well as the steps the government of Mauritius took to disrupt traffickers’ operations, launch its own investigation, and cooperate with other countries to prevent dealers from setting up elsewhere.
INTERVIEW: Bongani Bingwa speaks to Kathi Lynn Austin, Executive Director of Conflict Awareness and Arms Trafficking investigator
Not much is known about small arms trafficking, a global industry worth billions of dollars that feeds into many criminal syndicates. One woman has been tracking the dangerous network of illegal weapons for over 20 years … and her recent three-year investigation has revealed a huge network of illegal firearms that supply poachers with guns in the Kruger.
Published Jun 25, 2018 2:30 AM
REPORT: Corporate War Crimes: Prosecuting the Pillage of Natural Resources
Professor and CAP Board Member Emeritus James Stewart's guide provides a blueprint for prosecutors, advocates and others who wish to revive the prosecution of the war crime of pillage and hold accountable companies that illegally trade in conflict commodities.
Senior Analyst Brian Freskos appeared on BBC World News to discuss the implications of a possible Viktor Bout release.
Viktor Bout’s Gunrunning Successors
A CAP Briefing Report by Kathi Lynn Austin
In April 2012, convicted international arms trafficker Viktor Bout was sentenced to 25 years in a US prison on charges of terrorism. However, questions remained about the fate of his billion-dollar gunrunning network. CAP set out to investigate, and busted open a major weapons ring targeting Sudan, Congo and Syria.
Viktor Bout waits in a holding cell in Bangkok on 9 March 2009. Photograph: Sukree Sukplang/REUTERS
Viktor Bout Saga Continues
Executive Director Kathi Lynn Austin tells The Guardian that in a post-release situation arms trafficker Viktor Bout could be weaponized again in areas of the world where the Merchant of Death has a proven track record. CAP's work on Viktor Bout's successors (see below) are a stark reminder.
The Global OC Index found Ukraine as one of the largest arms trafficking markets in Europe, especially when it comes to small arms and ammunition.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine inherited the Soviet's large military stockpiles on its territory, and some were trafficked from Ukraine to the rest of Europe and beyond.
After Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Ukrainians have been using whatever weapons they can find to defend their homeland.
How has the conflict affected the smuggling of weapons? And how will it continue to do so in the future?
Find out more as Thin Lei Win talks to Mark Galeotti, Kathi Lynn Austin and Viatcheslav Avioutskii.
Copyright 2022 Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime
Weapons captured by the Russians: Geharh of the world sale | Photo: Sergei Ilnitsky / EPA
How Ukraine Intends to Control Arms Smuggling
Von Matthias Gebauer und Fritz Schaap
July 19, 2022
"Even before the war, Ukraine was a hub for arms and people smugglers, and they don't just stop because there's a war," says arms smuggling expert Kathi Lynn Austin.