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ANGELA C. ANTAKLY H. Benson, Pérez Matos, Antakly & Watts Caracas, Venezuela Página Web: International Conference.

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Presentation on theme: "ANGELA C. ANTAKLY H. Benson, Pérez Matos, Antakly & Watts Caracas, Venezuela Página Web: International Conference."— Presentation transcript:

1 ANGELA C. ANTAKLY H. Benson, Pérez Matos, Antakly & Watts Caracas, Venezuela Página Web: International Conference of the Inter-American Network of Environmental Law Specialists San Juan, Puerto Rico – June 2 nd, 2011 Environmental Crimes: Criminal Procedures, Penalties, Results and Deterrence

2 ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW (1992) This Law, supplements the Environment Law and its main purpose is to determine what must be considered environmental offenses and establishes penalties for them. The Law also creates a system of precautionary measures for restitution and reparation aimed at minimizing environmental damage. Angela Antakly Pag 1

3 MAIN OFFENSES – –Damage to soil, vegetation and landscape – –Illegal discharges of waste water – –Discharges of hydrocarbons into water environments – –Engaging in forbidden activities in protected areas – –Waste disposal or abandonment in violation of standards – –Illegal extraction of non-metallic minerals – –Deforestation of hydrographic basins used for water supply Pag 2 Angela Antakly ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW

4 PENALTIES – –Prison – –Confinement – –Fines and – –Community work Angela Antakly Pag 3

5 Angela Antakly Pag 4 ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW ACCESORY PENALTIES INDIVIDUALS Temporary disqualification from public office or practice of a profession Publication of court decision Obligation to destroy the substances or materials that damage the environment Ban on contracting with public administration (3yrs.) and Suspension of permits

6 ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW Angela Antakly Pag 5 ACCESORY PENALTIES BODIES CORPORATE Ban on pollution-causing activity Closure of establishment Publication of court decision Destruction of substances or materials that damage Ban on contracting with public administration and Suspension of permits.

7 STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS – –Prison > 3 years = 5 years – –Prison < 3 years = 3 years – –Confinement < 6 months = 1 year – –Civil Actions = 10 years ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW Angela Antakly Pag 6

8 ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES LAW PROCEDURES – –Anyone may report a possible environmental crime to the competent authorities – –Investigation by competente authorities – –Administrative notification to responsable party – –Legal procedure through criminal courts Angela Antakly Pag 7

9 CONCLUSIONS Until now very few cases have gone to the criminal courts Most cases are settled at the administrative level The most common penalties are fines and remediation of the contaminated sites Recently violations to the environmental laws have been used as an excuse to apply expropriation procedures Companies do tend to compensate affected communities at their own initiative Angela Antakly Pag 9

10 ¡THANK YOU! Angela Antakly Pag 10


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