An estimated 3.3 million people across the East Asia and Pacific region consume heroin on an annual basis. In China, an estimated 2,366,000 people used heroin in 2010, followed by Indonesia with 247,000 users, Vietnam with 155,000 heroin users, and Myanmar with 100,000 users.
In 2011, up to 65 tons of pure heroin was believed to have been consumed across the region.
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime estimates that the heroin market in the region is worth $16.3 Billion.
Source: “Transnational Organized Crime in East Asia and the Pacific: A Threat Assessment,” UNODC, April 2013, Executive Summary, page vi.
A survey conducted by the Wildlife Conservation Society found that there were at least 33 websites that were selling wildlife and wildlife products in Vietnam. Included in these sites were 7 forums where the animals were discussed and sold, 14 online trading websites, and 11 personal or corporate websites. The survey also found that Facebook was used to facilitate the wildlife trade.
The survey found a total of 108 species were being sold online in Vietnam, with 24 percent of the species being protected under Vietnamese law.
(Click to see price list of endangered animals worldwide.)
Source: ”Vietnam looks to curb web trade in wildlife,” Thanh Nien, April 18, 2013.
Pangolins were being sold on the black market in Asia at prices as high as $1,000 for the entire pangolin.
The pangolin is considered to be a delicacy in Asia and is scales are used for various medicinal purposes.
In a span of 18 months, intelligence reports claim that a criminal trafficking organization in Malaysia captured 22,000 pangolins to sell on the black market.
In Vietnam, between 40,000 to 60,000 pangolins were believed to have been caught by traffickers in 2011.
(Additional prices of endangered animals.)
Source: Audrey Garric, “Pangolins under threat as black market trade grows,” Guardian, March 12, 2013.
The Vietnam Tobacco Association stated that cigarette producers in the country lost $193.5 Million in revenue from cigarette smuggling activities in 2012. An estimated 12.9 billion cigarettes were believed to have been smuggled into Vietnam during the year.
Cigarettes sold on the black market makes up between 18 to 22 percent of the total tobacco market in Vietnam.
Source: Philip Heijmans, “Up in smoke,” Bangkok Post, February 26, 2013.
Wildlife protection organizations believe that between 40,000 to 60,000 pangolins were taken from the wild in Vietnam and sold on the global black market.
Pangolins are considered a delicacy in certain parts of the world, and their scales are claimed to treat many ailments. However, there is no medical science to back up those claims.
(Endangered animals price list.)
Source: Jeremy Hance, “Pity the pangolin: little-known mammal most common victim of the wildlife trade,” Mongabay.com, February 11, 2013.
A former head of the forest management board in a forest in Vietnam was sentenced to jail for 12 years for allowing loggers to illegally cut down trees and to smuggle the timber out of the forest.
The illegal loggers paid the official $2,300 (48 Million Vietnamese Dong) when they cut down trees between June 2010 to June 2011.
(More prices of bribes paid around the world.)
Source: “Corrupt forest rangers jailed over illegal logging scheme,” VietNamNet, February 5, 2013.
Up to 30,000 dogs are smuggled from Thailand across the border and eventually end up for sale on the black market in Vietnam. The dogs are sold for $26 to $32 (800 to 1,000 Thai Baht).
The dogs that are targeted by smugglers are not strays, but healthier dogs that are kept as pets.
(See more illegal animal prices.)
Source: “Out of the meat trade, into agony,” Bangkok Post, October 21, 2012.
A legitimate iPhone 5 is sold in retail stores in Vietnam for $959 (20 Million Vietnamese Dong). A counterfeit version of the iPhone5 made in China is available for purchase in Vietnam for $28 (600,000 VND). A counterfeit version of the iPhone 4S is available for $43 (900,000 VND).
There are other types of counterfeit smartphones and tablets available for sale in Vietnam. A legitimate Nokia N9 smartphone retails for $479 (10 Million VND). The counterfeit version of the smartphone is sold for 471 (1.5 Million VND).
A Samsung Galaxy Note Tablet is sold in retail stores for $767 (16 Million VND). The counterfeit version of the tablet, called the A9-3G, is sold for $43 (4.4 Million VND).
Source: “Chinese counterfeit smart phones dirt cheap, but unsalable,” VietnamNet Bridge, October 9, 2012.
There are over 50,000 unauthorized migrants estimated to be living in the United Kingdom, according to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. An additional 100,000 migrants are estimated to live in other cities across Europe, primary in the Czech Republic, Germany and Poland.
In South Korea, there are over 10,000 Vietnamese migrants working in the country unlawfully.
In total, around 850,000 Vietnamese migrants are working around the world without proper documentation.
Source: “Migrant Smuggling in Asia: A Thematic Review of Literature,” United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, August 2012.