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Balkans Organized Crime Case Study

Issue Definition

Organized crime

Organized crime is becoming a major issue not only in the United States but also in many other countries around the world. Abadinsky (2016) defines organized crime as “a category of transnational, national, or local groupings of highly centralized enterprises run by criminals who intend to engage in illegal activity, most commonly for money and profit” (56). These enterprises are often run in syndicated manner, using brutal force against anyone or any authority that they perceive to be a threat to their operations.

Balkans’ organized crime

The Balkans includes countries in central Europe running to the Mediterranean Sea (Benedek, 2010). They include Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, and Slovenia. Balkans organized crimes are highly centralized illegal business enterprises run locally, nationally, or internationally by criminals whose primary interest is to make quick economic gains using unlawful means (Arsovska, 2015).

Balkan’s organized crime can be classified into different categories. The following are the major categories of Balkan’s organized crime that affect many countries, including the United States.

Drug trafficking

Drug trafficking remains one of the major Balkans’ organized crime. According to Arsovska (2015), these syndicated groups often traffic drugs from South America, Central Europe and parts of Africa to North America and Western Europe. The efficiency and level of coordination used in running the drug business has made it difficult for these businesses to be tracked down and destroyed by multi-governmental agencies, making the country vulnerable.

These drug traffickers have infiltrated the security fabric of many nations around the world, making it almost impossible to track their activities. Abadinsky (2016) says that these traffickers have their agents in the top security agencies in Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. They know when they are being tracked and know how to escape the dragnets put in place by government agencies. In the United States, the government is still trying to find effective ways of dealing with this problem.

Human trafficking

Human trafficking is becoming a major problem in many countries around the world. Women from Asia, South America, and less developed European countries are often kidnapped and trafficked to the United States and Western Europe where they become sex slaves. Most of them are often lured into this form of slavery by being promised lucrative employment opportunities only to realize when it is too late that they have been sent to slavery. Fighting this form of crime has been a problem because the victims are often not aware that they are being sent to slavery.

Trade in contraband goods

Trade in contraband goods is also a form of Balkans’ crime that the government of the United States is trying to deal with in the recent past. These criminals take advantage of the porous borders and security lapses to traffic sub-standard goods into the country. Sometimes these criminals succeed in smuggling their goods into the country without paying the necessary levies.

These organized crimes often harm the economy of the country directly. For instance, failing to pay tax denies the country the income it deserves in order to run its operations normally. Others such as drug and human trafficking harm individual citizens of this nation, especially if the locals fall prey to these criminal gangs. The government should, therefore, find a way of cooperating with other nations to fight this crime. It can sanction businesses whose source of income is not clear.


Benedek, W. (2010). Transnational terrorism, organized crime and peace-building: Human security in the Western Balkans. Basingstoke, U.K.: Palgrave Macmillan.

Abadinsky, H. (2016). Organized crime. Basingstoke, England: Palgrave Macmillan Publishers.

Arsovska, J. (2015). Decoding Albanian organized crime: Culture, politics, and globalization. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley & Sons.

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"Balkans Organized Crime." IvyPanda, 29 Sept. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/balkans-organized-crime/.

1. IvyPanda. "Balkans Organized Crime." September 29, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/balkans-organized-crime/.


IvyPanda. "Balkans Organized Crime." September 29, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/balkans-organized-crime/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "Balkans Organized Crime." September 29, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/balkans-organized-crime/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'Balkans Organized Crime'. 29 September.

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