This paper provides an empirical assessment of enforcement of environmental law in the Flemish Region. Data are used from the environmental inspectorate over a period of 20 years showing how many violations took place, how these violations were handled by the environmental inspectorate and how many cases were prosecuted. Attention is also paid to theoretical literature explaining why a low number ... [Show full abstract] of environmental crimes will be prosecuted. Data are also provided on sanctions which have been imposed. The question is addressed whether the enforcement approach found in the Flemish Region fits into a deterrence or rather a compliance approach. Recent changes towards the introduction of administrative fines for environmental violations are also discussed.