EAL’S Wildlife Crime Division
The Black Wolves, former FBI & CIA agents, law enforcement professionals, top crime analysts, cyber experts, and undercover field agents, form our Wildlife Crime Division – hunting down the world’s environmental criminals like a pack of wolves.


EAL’s Black Wolves in the field

The need for delicate undercover operations and the production of high-quality actionable intelligence prompted EAL to create the Wildlife Crime Division, a distinct team within EAL referred to as The Black Wolves. The team includes former FBI and CIA agents, law enforcement professionals, top crime analysts, undercover field agents, and it is directed by EAL’s Executive Director, Andrea Crosta.

The highly trained and experienced Black Wolves are tasked with collecting intelligence, performing investigations, and aiding law enforcement to take down specific individuals and organizations involved in environmental crime, some of whom are among the most significant and dangerous in the world. Therefore, the work performed by the Black Wolves is often covert and potentially dangerous, requiring EAL to keep the identities of much of the team, targets, methodologies, and geographical locations confidential not just publicly, but also within EAL.

Read about The Black Wolves in action here and here.


A subset of the Black Wolves includes:

  • Andrea Crosta – EAL’s Executive Director with over 30 years of experience in conservation and over 17 years in high-end security technology and services, homeland security, anti-piracy, investigations, and risk management.
  • “Marco” – The FBI’s most effective Undercover Operator in the history of the agency. Marco’s undercover work resulted in the largest number of successful convictions in the FBI Undercover Program. After 30 years in the FBI, Marco is now a member of EAL’s Black Wolves.
  • “Robert” – CIA undercover Operations Officer for 25 years. Robert has deep operational experience in the U.S., Europe, Central America, South America and the Middle East. Robert personally developed, managed, and carried a multitude of operations during his career that lead to the capture of several high-profile terrorists, and the effective dismantling of terrorist networks.
  • Chiara Talerico – Chiara is the main crime analyst at Elephant Action League. She is skilled in analyzing raw intelligence coming from the field, studying crime patterns and modus operandi, geographical crimes mapping and database management. She holds a Masters of Law with a specialization in international criminal law from the University of Pisa and a Master’s of Science in Countering Organized Crime and Terrorism from UCL.
  • “Arthur” – He is a top web intelligence professional and cybersecurity expert.


This team runs the intelligence-gathering operations, including in the cyberspace, manages dozens of sources around the world, and undertakes the collection and analysis of information in support of the investigations, as well as dissemination to government agencies and partners.

The Black Wolves function somewhat separately from the rest of EAL’s operations, both physically and in terms of information sharing. The nature of its work, the need to function clandestinely in its tasks and missions around the globe, requires this separation. This anonymity, along with the diverse expertise of the team, allows this team to work alongside or integrate with conservation projects run by other organizations.

The Black Wolves – an interdependent group of professionals, or ‘wildlife team,’ hunting and taking down criminal prey like a pack of wolves.

It is critical that contemporary intelligence methodologies and professional investigative activities are used to incite proactive tactics into conservation or risk losing the global war against environmental crime. Intelligence is the strategic resource that focuses investigations, law enforcement, governmental policy changes, and conservation funding.