Research Handbooks in Financial Law series
Edited by Barry Rider
Chapter 7: Trafficking crimes
Trafficking crimes are typically a subset of organized crime, at least as the latter is defined in the United Nations Palermo 2000 convention. It is therefore of import to analyse the concept of organized crime, which, unfortunately, will not be possible in this short chapter. There are several ‘species’ of organized crime and organized criminals; trafficking crimes are typical of all from so-called professional criminals, that is groups of criminals that form and re-form as required, via the criminal societies to terrorists utilizing organized crime methodology to fund themselves. The generic term organized crime is generally used for crimes that are organized, that is professional crime and criminal societies. A crucial aspect of all criminal networks is that they are self-organized critical systems. They are critical systems because of the tension between the elements in the system itself, between the system and similar systems, and between the system and its legal and socio-political environment. This intrinsic state of affairs is exacerbated by the lack of an external conflict resolution mechanism. Nevertheless, the magnitude of the disturbance will be absorbed by the self-repairing property, which characterizes such systems, as one participant is replaced by another and as a new balance is struck between networks. Whereas one can distinguish four species of organized crime, by characteristics, the criminal activities of organized crime can be subdivided into three kinds, by function, namely coercive, predatory and market crime.
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