Essay Example on The ambiguous notion of Victimhood in organized Crime









The ambiguous notion of Victimhood in organised crime is difficult to locate within both organisations and individuals with the former having different political social economic agendas and the latter it are subjected to the nature of the person who is the victim This could be either low levels such as petty theft or high level crime such as human trafficking The Governmental organisation the National Crime Agency in 2014 decipher that a victim of Organised crime is defined as someone who is physically injured killed or suffered psychological trauma through a direct consequence of criminal activity such as sexual abuse and shooting in gangs Alternatively indirectly such as through drug use or stress from criminal activity Further to this a victim of an organised crime may also be defined as not having a direct effect on an individual s physical or mental wellbeing such as loss of money assets such as reputation national security and economic impact For example in the US the World Bank estimates that each year spending to bribe public officials costs 1 trillion causing multiple economic problems and damage to legitimate economic activity US Embassy 2011 

Organised crime also manifests in individuals and business which in turn has consequences for communities and societies by reducing the quality of life social cohesion and lead to rise in crime levels National Crime Agency 2014 p10 For example the Police Foundation 2016 in a study of local communities found that Organised crime groups had the most significant impact on neighbourhoods relating to the high degree of social control they exerted Nonetheless in itself organised crime is also difficult to decipher As Rensselaer argues that Organised crime itself is an elusive phenomenon 1991 p1 is worth noting as may refer to both official Organised crime organisations such as the Mafia Hagan 2006 or simply crime which happens to be organised such as human smuggling Chin 1998 Thus both Organised crime and its victims are ambiguous in its nature a theme throughout this essay When considering victims of organised crime they can come from all spheres for example through drug trafficking and illegal gambling This essay will discuss comparisons with more recent increases in human trafficking and smuggling with the idea of consent of the victim if they consent to be smuggled and if violence isn t involved which is a large element of organised crime their victim status may be questioned It will also discuss the less well reported tobacco smuggling marketplace and the rise of cyber crime victims all these whom the FBI state are keystones within TOC

Transnational organised crime enterprises FBI 2017 Human Trafficking is defined by the UN in 2003 as the recruitment transportation transfer harbouring or receipt of persons by improper means such as force abduction fraud or coercion for an improper purpose including forced labour or sexual exploitation National Institute of Justice 2017 Surtees 2008 in her research on South Eastern Europe SEE trafficking defines victim as someone who experiences injustice where the perpetrator is responsible Billings et al 2005 It is also used to highlight rights of victims of trafficking to assistance and protection from their governments p41 rather than to imply powerlessness of the victim once they have been trafficked Human Trafficking is labelled the most prevalent types of organised crime activities in the EU by Europol It is therefore likely to have a high number of victims with the EU from 2008 to 2010 reported 23 632 identified or presumed victims of human trafficking in the reporting member states Eurostat European Commission 2013 Human Trafficking is characterised by Exploitation and multiple dependencies Aronowitz 2001 p 76 Often Sexual exploitation in particular being the most prevalent 

As Allum 2012 argues that Trafficking of persons in Europe for sexual exploitation was estimated to have 70 000 victims with this being a stable trend Surtees 2005 found that in South Eastern Europe SEE victims are increasingly being trafficked within their home countries Although victims are trafficked for various forms of exploitation approximately 85 percent of assisted victims in SEE in 2003 and 2004 were women and girls trafficked for sexual exploitation This data and literature suggest the clear extensive number of victims of Human Trafficking as a dominant market in organised crime globally thus maybe making it difficult to question if victimhood is ambiguous here Despite the fact In EU figures often they include Presumed victims who have declined to be defined as a victim of trafficking or not being able to be formally identified by authorities Eurostat European Commission 2013 p 20 As Kelly 2002 argues that victims may have only partial information about trafficking operation and not always willing to disclose details of their traffickers and experiences due to being highly traumatised There are therefore a large number of these victims who go unreported perhaps out of fear of being labelled a criminal themselves or not having protection against the persecutor Thus according to the Home Offices crime recording regulations 2017 a No victim no crime stance would often be taken as without a victim or someone acting on behalf of a victim hence a case of trafficking would only be recorded as a crime related incident highlighting the ambiguity in identifying victims of Human Trafficking

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