Organized crime has much more dangerous consequences for the economy of the country than badly informed person could imagine. Canada loses millions of dollars every day because of the crimes committed by gangs, Mafia and other criminal organizations.
Money laundry creates a serious threat for the economy of the country. Washing out dirty money gangsters ruin the businesses of honest people as they can afford lower prices in order to wash out the criminal money. In addition the illegal profits of these organizations are not shown in any tax declarations and country loses money this way also. About 17 billions $ is laundered in Canada each year.
Damage to property is another serious threat to the economy. Gangster wars cause a lot of destruction as participants of the battles rarely mind official buildings they damage of ruin or innocent people they kill. Property damage causes the growth of the insurance rates, which has negative impact on the economy.
Another bad consequence is caused by drugs selling. Drugs distribution becomes a serious problem and should be regarded in the scale of the country. Drug distribution results the appearance of more and more drug addicts and this increases the expenditures in the field of the health care. The government has to spend large sums of money to anti-drug companies and treating drug addicts. The amount of money received on drugs selling varies from 7 to 10 billion $ per year.
Big group of various economic crimes also brings serious damage to the economy. Criminals are very inventive in this field and economic crime has so many manifestations that it’s hard to enumerate them all. Credit card frauds, hacking, insurance frauds and telemarketing frauds are the most widespread and dangerous for the economy economic crimes.
Scientists provide a lot of theories trying to explain the origins and reasons of criminal behavior. Most of the theories turn to the ideas of inequality and trying poor people to get some compensation for their lower status and lack of possibilities in life. All these theories can not be applied to Bobby’s case, as we know that he originates from quite respected family. Bobby studied in good private schools and got high grades. Now he studies at the University and gave a good account of himself. Parents are not aware of his dangerous contacts with the members of the gang Hells Angels and his wish to become the member of this gang. As we can see from the description, t model of compensation of some economical factors or social status can not be applied in this situation. Neither we can blame Bobby’s neighborhood as being the representatives of higher middle class his family lives in quite safe surrounding.
Social Control theory regards all human creatures as naturally inclined to committing crimes and become surprised with those, who don’t. This theory could be applied to Bobby as it’s hard to determine social or any others premises for his affection with Hells Angels. Being fascinated by the successful carrier of his parents, Bobby wants to become successful by any means but he doesn’t make any difference in legal and illegal means to achieve this success. Following his bad nature could be one of the possible explanations. External factors don’t give us ground to assume Bobby’s criminal inclinations and we have to turn to his nature for the answers.
When we start thinking about the organized crime we imagine terrible crimes, such as murdering, robbing, smuggle of the hard drugs and firearm selling. In reality all these activities are really performed by the gangs but there are a big number of smaller activities, which are not so extreme but create not less damage for the society.
Hard crimes are the prerogative of the old members of the criminal groups and all the newcomers will get a routing, small job in the beginning. Selling drugs becomes the first illegal activity for all new members of the group. This strategy brings money to the organizations and doesn’t require special skills or training. Most probably that Bobby will be used for this kind of activity when he joins the gang. As he studies at the University, and meets big number of people this can become good opportunity for drug selling. Selling firearms is another very popular activity within the criminal groups. If Bobby want’s to become a significant member of criminal community, he, most probably, will have to turn to this activity also. Women who voluntary or involuntary get to gangs become involved in prostitution activity. There is a big number of people who provide the work of this branch of criminal activity and newcomers, such as Bobby can play second roles in this business, looking for new clients for prostitutes and doing other small orders. Smuggling is another activity suitable for the newcomer. It’s evident that he will not get serous tasks in the beginning and will operate only limited information about the details of the operations but situation may change when the person get more experience. Economical crimes, such as credit card and passport counterfeiting, bank and stock fraud, e-mail scams, and on-line child pornography make another group of activities of the gangs. Some of them can be committed to Bobby if he enters the gang as he possess a good level of education, knows how to work in the internet and can share good knowledge about the economy got from his farther.
Now we will describe actions police performs in order to stop organized crimes mentioned in the previous point.
Several organizations support anti-smuggling initiative and fight this kind of crime. RCMP, Department of Justice, Canada Customs and Revenue Agency and number of other organizations combine their effort fighting this criminal activity.
Criminal Law improvement act passed in 1996 contained a number of issues, which directly concerned OC. The section of amendments concerning economic crimes made an essential contribution to the OC fight. This group of amendments included new sections describing new crimes involving computers and credit cards. Competition Act is another tool used to fight OC as it concerns the illegal telemarketing and other deceptive marketing techniques. All these affairs became popular kind of activity within the criminal organizations.
Controlled Drugs and Substances Act provides more opportunities for fighting drug smugglers, dealers and other individuals, connected with this type of criminal activity. Three main sections of this new law present strategies aiming to control the import, export, distribution of legal and illegal drugs, limits the medical use of legal drugs and directs the actions of the police and judicial organizations in the field of drug use.
Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) act aims to stop money laundering, which composes one of the dominant activities of the OC groups.
New law passed on November 27, 2003 became a serious step in the fight against OC. It targets all organized crime groups and must affect all their activities. According to this act, the members of OC groups will be deprived of their assets only on the ground of their participation in OC, without any further proves of their guilt.
It’s hard to overestimate the role of information for the police sources in their fight against OC. There are several ways police forces receive this information. First of all they can use their databases, which contain all the information collected earlier. Such databases can include information about the vehicles and about the individuals who had problems with police before.
Bugs, wiretapping, and other intercepting devices become another important source of information. Quick development and science and technology provided big progress in this field.
Third source of information is the use of informants. This method was actively used when investigating the case of Hells Angels. One of the most effective, it has a lot of hidden dangers as the life of informants is constantly set in danger and, in addition, there is no 100% confidence in information they provide.
Sharing information between different departments of the police and even different organizations that fight OC becomes the important factor of the success as it gives the opportunity to attack OC from the different sides.
In order to attack OC from different sides joint law enforcement units were created in Canada during last several years. These unites consist of representatives of different police organizations who investigate different types of crimes.
Results of investigations performed by joint squads show that such a practice can be successfully used in the future despite some problems that appear in this comparatively new strategy. Canada has developed some new strategies, which were not applied in any other country. Police squad, which specializes on the cultural crimes, was created by Sûreté du Québec and the SPVM. Despite the fact that this squad was created comparatively recently and consists of only two officers, it has shown good results in investigating the crimes connected with art works, museum robberies, etc. This new strategy has proved to be a successful one.
Another strategy developed after the year of 1999 is centered on the prevention of dirty money washing in the country. For last ten years a lot was done in order to change the situation and make money laundering impossible in the country. Several methods were combined in this strategy. Changes in legislation (Money Laundering Act), reports about big financial transfers and creating new body aiming to fight the money laundry Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada helped to make serious obstacles for OC in this field. This combination of methods has proved to be a very successful new strategy in the fight with organized crime.
Though investigators haven’t found strong ties between Canadian and Mexican OC they still suspect that such ties could exist.
Mexican OC is generally associated with drugs smuggling. During the last years Mexican OC has changed its positions and from second-class assistants of drug-magnates country it became a powerful drug empire. “Every year 70 percent of the cocaine and 50 percent of the marijuana sold in the U.S. pass through Mexico.” – states OC specialists Antonio NicasoInitially. During the last year Mexico has spread its influence on amphetamines and hard drugs, such as heroine. Violence, intimidation and corruption are natural consequences of the narco-directed business of the Mexican cartels. Bribing officials and using corruption they neutralize the resistance of the government and police. Sad statistics shows that about 1 billion dollars is spent by Mexican cartels per week for bribes to federal, state and local officials to continue drugs smuggling.
Another activity associated with Mexican OC includes smuggling. Close ties with the OC groups from other countries, Mexican cartels help people willing to relocate to make this illegally. Alcohol and tobacco make the main group of goods, cartels use for smuggling. Produced very chip and illegally, these goods make the perfect product for smuggling as their price growths several times in more developed countries.
Theoretically, Bobby could use his origins and ties with his mother’s native country in order to arrange the transportation of drugs. Big distance between the countries will probably be the most sufficient obstacle. In addition, the US is more suitable place for drug smugglers as it’s situated much closer. This can be said about two other types of illegal activities of the Mexican OC. But still we can not completely exclude the possibility of OC organizations of Canada and Mexico interaction.
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