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Understanding Organised Crime: Estimating the Scale and the Social and Economic Costs

NCJ Number
Hannah Mills; Sara Skodbo; Peter Blyth
Date Published
October 2013
137 pages
This report provides up-to-date estimates of the scale of a range of organized crime types and the social and economic costs associated with these types of organized crime in the United Kingdom (UK).
Results show that the social and economic costs of organized crime to the UK amount to many billions of pounds. Drugs supply (£10.7 billion), organized fraud (£8.9 billion) and organized immigration crime types (£1.0 billion) have major impacts on the UK, and other less visible crimes also cause substantial harm. This report outlines evidence on organized acquisitive crime types; organized child sexual exploitation; counterfeit currency; drugs supply; organized environmental crime; firearms; organized fraud; organized immigration crime; organized intellectual property crime; and organized wildlife crime, all of which have a substantial impact on the UK. Estimates of the scale and social and economic costs of organized crime can help set policy and law enforcement priorities and highlight the relative potential benefits of different ways of tackling organized crime. This research improves estimation methods, discusses a wider range of data, and ultimately provides a considerably broader and more detailed picture of the scale and costs of organized crime to the UK than has previously been available. Tables and references