Organized Crime Research Briefs
Organized Crime Research Briefs are short summaries of Organized Crime Research Reports or hot topics in the study of organized crime. Full versions of these publicly available Organized Crime Research Reports are available through interlibrary loan in hardcopy or in the Depository Services Program’s E-Collection. PDF versions of reports are available upon request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Review of Foreign Witness Protection Programs
Around the world most witness protection programs are managed by police forces. Witness intimidation is usually perpetrated by criminal organizations. Most protected witnesses are criminally-involved.
- Problem-0riented Policing and Securities Fraud
Problem-oriented policing (POP) has not been systemically applied to securities fraud in Canada. Offenders are generally white, well-educated males who specialize in white-collar crime, and who move often. Seniors are common victims; people are often repeatedly victimized.
- Estimating the Size of Canada’s Methamphetamine and MDMA Markets
There are no good estimates of the size of Canadian meth and ecstasy markets. Multiplier and capture-recapture methods may be able to estimate number of users and sellers, as well as quantity consumed and exported.
- Mobility of Criminal Groups
Criminal groups are more self-organizing and emergent than strategic when setting up in new locations. Preventing criminal opportunities can stifle the migration of organized crime.
- Problem-Oriented Policing and Outdoor Cannabis Cultivation
As with indoor marijuana grow operations, particular resources and circumstances are required for growing cannabis outdoors. Understanding offending patterns can lead to novel suppression and disruption strategies.
- Community-level Effects of Law Enforcement Anti-Organized Crime Counter-measures
Police operations against organized crime have limited to no measurable impact on the public’s perception of safety or recorded levels of crime at the city-wide level.
- Factors Shaping Organized Crime
The structure of organized crime can tell us about available criminal opportunities and criminal operations, as well as the enforcement environment. Group structure is a result of external factors, mitigated by individual resources and decision making.
- Integrated Anti-Organized Crime Units
As of 2009, there were 157 integrated organized crime units. Clarity and consistency on the roles and responsibilities of partners and team members is the key to their success.
- Literature on Organized Crime
Organized crime largely exists due to illicit markets. The application of violence by organized crime is cyclical. There is no consensus on how to measure the harm of organized crime.
- Police and Prosecutor Training Needs to Combat Organized Crime
Shared experience and information makes for effective training. Cross-institutional and co-training models are promising. Introductory courses and seminar series are suggested.
- Creating an Organized Crime Harm Index
Insufficient quantifiable data exists to reliably measure the scope and harm of organized crime in Canada. Detailed self-reported victimization data and data on illicit markets are required. Proxy estimates or indicators may be useful.
- Defining Street Gangs
Many different definitions of “gang” and “street gang” are in use. Differences can hinder gang suppression and prevention activities. A proposed, common ground definition is nearly identical to the “criminal organization” definition in the Criminal Code of Canada.
- Gangs, Social Networking and Law Enforcement
Gang members generally use social networking sites individually to promote gang culture or individual reputations, not to collectively arrange offending or recruit members. Law enforcement monitoring of social networking sites is useful for policing gangs.
- Comprehensive Approaches to Address Street Gangs
Comprehensive gang crime reduction strategies target crime with prevention, intervention and suppression efforts. Single strategy programs have been of limited effectiveness.
- Mobility of Criminal Groups: Reflection Based on Vietnamese Organized Crime Research
The existence of criminogenic and criminal market conditions are the main factors in the emergence of organized crime. History, the economy, and state support are other factors to consider. Sometimes emergent and strategic networks cannot be divided.
- Mobility of Criminal Groups: Reflection Based on Cammora Organized Crime Research
Organized crime groups that are predatory or provide an illicit good or service transpose their operations differently, and for different reasons. Varied types of movement - of individuals, branches, or headquarters - require separate consideration.
- Mobility of Criminal Groups: Reflection Based on Mafia Organized Crime Research
Strategic thinking can be combined with addressing emergent factors faced by organized crime. Supply of criminals, local conditions, and demand for organized crime are proposed categories of analysis.
- Street Gang Control Strategies
Not enough empirical evaluations have been done of gang control strategies to perform a statistical meta-analysis. Programs are more effective when they are directed at specific populations, particularly chronic gang members. The empirical effectiveness of the Spergel Model is questioned.
- Methods for Measuring Cyber-fraud
Cyber-fraud data is collected by a variety of organizations, including banks, regulatory agencies, and various police agencies. Often it is not collected at all. A study of offender network structures could be applied to methods of identifying hidden populations of cyber-fraud offenders.
- Understudied Areas of Organized Crime
Understudied areas of organized crime include how organized crime groups spend their money, environmental crime, wildlife crime, organized crime infiltration in legitimate enterprises and markets, the counterfeiting of goods, and online gambling.
- Social Media, Organized Crime and Law Enforcement
Persons suspected of organized crime involvement do not tend to display their illicit activities on their social media profiles, but instead use social media to keep connected to their friends, families, and to share their interests. Police, on the other hand, employ social media to connect to the communities that they serve and as an investigative tool.
- Canada's Role in the Global Meth Market
According to preliminary estimates, Canada produces 0.6 – 4.6% of the world's supply of amphetamine-type stimulants, including ecstasy. This finding suggests that Canada is not a major global exporter of amphetamine-type stimulants.
- Marine Ports and Organized Crime
While enforcement measures have resulted in a number of successful seizures, Canada's largest marine ports remain vulnerable to the smuggling of inbound precursor chemicals, illegal drugs and counterfeit goods.
- Securities and Organized Crime
Evidence of traditional organized crime in securities markets is scarce, but the industry is vulnerable to fraudulent activity perpetuated by market insiders.
- Commercial Construction and OC
The economic and regulatory environment in which the Canadian commercial construction sector operates is at moderate to high risk of corruption and organized criminal activity.
- Data mining for Possible OC
A method of data mining regular police records to identify possible criminal organizations has been developed. Between 2001 and 2006, offending related to 236 possible criminal organizations was reported to RCMP "E" Division, with 39 of the groups being particularly serious.
- MOUs and Integrated Units
Immediate operational concerns usually take precedence over the timely establishment of memoranda of understanding (MOU) for integrated units. There are, however, ways to improve the efficiency with which MOU are established.