Reports on Blood Diamonds and Diamond Smuggling

The Failure of Good Intentions,

Shawn Gerald Blore, May 2005,

This report is a detective story. It is about fraud and theft and murder, and good intentions gone wrong. The study was undertaken for several reasons. First, Brazil has a long history of diamond production, and is the largest diamond producing country in South America. Very little, however, has been published – at least in English – about Brazilian diamonds. As in Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sierra Leone, Brazil’s diamonds are alluvial in nature, and there is a large population of artisanal miners. Brazilian diamonds have attracted a wide variety of exploration and mining firms, as well as the usual complement of international buyers and soldiers of fortune. Finally, the massacre of 29 diamond diggers on the Roosevelt Indian Reserve in the remote Rondônia rainforest in 2004 attracted international media attention and demonstrated that conflict diamonds are by no means restricted to Africa.

Fugitives and Phantoms: The Diamond Exporters of Brazil,

Shawn Gerald Blore, March 2006

Brazil is one of the oldest diamond producing countries in the world,
but nobody can say where half of the diamonds it exports have been mined, and government certificates accompanying fully one quarter of Brazilian exports are fraudulent. The PAC report demonstrates that Brazil’s diamond sector is in deep crisis, a crisis that affects the credibility of the newly-minted global system to block trade in the conflict diamonds that fuelled four of Africa’s most horrific wars

Triple Jeopardy – Triplicate Forms and Triple Borders: Controlling Diamond Exports from Guyana,

Shawn Gerald Blore, April 2006.

In this report, Partnership Africa Canada reveals an illegal tri-border diamond smuggling system, operating completely outside the international Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) for rough diamonds. The cross-border diamond smuggling is made possible by weak controls in Brazil and Venezuela. Triple Jeopardy – Triplicate Forms and Triple Borders: Controlling Diamond Exports from Guyana tells the story of Guyana’s diamonds, worth an estimated US$43 million annually. By and large, Guyana’s internal controls are good – possibly among the best worldwide. But a significant proportion – as much as 20% by value – are smuggled to the nearby Brazilian border town of Boa Vista, where they are mixed with Venezuelan diamonds and laundered back out through Guyana. The region’s lax controls make the entire diamond industry and the KPCS vulnerable to infiltration from the “conflict” or “blood diamonds” that the KPCS was designed to eradicate.

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