This graduate course analyses major ‘organized crime’ groups across the globe and the various forms of transnational crime encountered in the contemporary setting.

Transnational crime includes illicit markets such as for drugs, antiques and human smuggling and trafficking, small arms and strategic weapons smuggling, intellectual property fraud and fake pharmaceuticals, piracy and environmental crime (exotic species and hazardous waste disposal) undertaken by a variety of crime groups, criminal networks and criminalized states.  The role of organised crime groups is compared and explored in terms of both local (e.g. protection, extortion, gambling, prostitution) and cross-border markets and activities, including the relationship between crime and terrorism.

The course begins by assessing the concepts, definitions and theories of transnational crime and organised crime and exploring their origins and phenomena across different geographical regions. Traditional forms of organised crime such as Mafia, Triads, Yakuza, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs OMCGs) and new hybrid and non-traditional forms (as found in cyberspace, illicit markets and “grey” business) are reviewed and their relative mobility across activities, place and ethnicity assessed. Case studies will be used to analyse the practices and modus operandi of crime groups and macrocriminal networks in transnational crime.

Please note that this course is conducted online.

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