Assessing concordance between trends in high-level drug trafficking and other serious and organised crimes in Australia, 2005–2006 to 2014–2015

Caitlin Elizabeth Hughes, Jenny Chalmers, Monika Klimoski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aims: Across the globe law enforcement agencies frequently link trafficking in illicit drugs to serious and organised crime such as terrorism and gun trafficking. However, there remain few systematic academic analyses of the extent and nature of links. This paper explored the extent of concordance between trends in high-level drug trafficking and seven other serious and organised crimes in Australia: and which crimes (and crime subtypes) most and least correlated with drug trafficking. Methods: Official crime data from the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions was obtained on criminal prosecutions on drug trafficking, money laundering, fraud, weapons trafficking, people trafficking, sex trafficking, terrorism and corruption and trends examined over a decade: 2005–2006 to 2014–2015. Results: Analysis revealed a positive correlation between drug trafficking and money laundering and subcategories of corruption, fraud and people trafficking. No positive correlation was found between drug trafficking and sex trafficking, weapon trafficking or terrorism. Differences were found by type of drug-trafficking offence. Conclusions: These findings suggest that in Australia, high-level drug trafficking is most likely related to money laundering, fraud, corruption and people trafficking. It also suggests that drug trafficking and other serious and organised crime linkages may be more complex than often asserted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-233
Number of pages17
JournalDrugs: Education, Prevention and Policy
Volume25
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Aug 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Australia
  • Drug trafficking
  • Fraud
  • Money laundering
  • Organised crime
  • People trafficking
  • Terrorism

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