Patterns of criminal organisations

As globalisation creates new criminal opportunities, it is also giving rise to new forms of criminal organisations:

‘Glocal’ organisation

Crime is locally based but with global connections. Hobbs and Dunningham found that although crimes have global links (drug smuggling) they still depend on a local setting (where to sell the drugs). The globalisation of crime including acting as a hub around which a group is formed.


Glenny examined organisations that emerged in Russia and Eastern Europe after the fall of communism. The new Russian government deregulated much of the economy, leading to huge rises in food prices and rent. However, prices for oil, gas and metals were kept the same which were way below the world market price. Well connected citizens with access to large amounts of funds could buy these very cheaply and sell them on the world market which created a new elite, referred to as ‘oligarchs. To protect themselves from violence, they hired guards that were made up of ex-communist security. They were important for the emergence of a Russian capitalist class in the world economy. Because the Russian state was a brand-new state the police and the army didn’t quite know what their role was yet because everything was being started new and fresh. These oligarchs therefore hired their own mafia to protect themselves. These mafias became famous for their efficiency and professionalism meaning they began to brand themselves and franchise across the world due to globalisation.