31 December 2009

Al Qaeda wants 7 million dollars for freeing 3 Spanish hostages

Story in Le Monde, quoting el Mundo http://www.elmundo.es/elmundo/2009/12/31/espana/1262226162.html there are other conditions too, including the freeing of several Al Qeda of the Maghreb militants held in prisons in Mauretania. You can read the story in French or Spanish.

Former Liverpool drug dealer to take his crime-cutting ideas nationwide

Unusual piece of good news from Liverpool. Man heads the Criminal information Bureau, providing mentors and support for criminals when they come out of jail.

Republican threat forces 20 police officers to move homes

This is very depressing news. 3 dissident Republican groups targeting PSNI officers and being joined by disillusioned ex-Provos. Gives a timeline of incidents during 2009.

Iran's involvement in British hostages' kidnapping

Guardian claims that Peter Moore was installing IT equipment in Ministry of Finance that would have discovered Revolutionary Guards siphoning off money for militias allied to it.

30 December 2009

Flores drug indictment gives clues to Mexican cartels' networks in the US

The story of how the cartels moved and distributed their narcotics in the US, exposed by betrayals consequent upon Calderon's attack on the established groups in Mexico.

Shoplifters? Studies say keep an eye on workers

Employees nick more than shoplifters by abusing the gift card system...and the Banks? and the executives? Weve been here before. Crime is what the lower classes do, neber the bosses. Id like to see a study which shows clearly who loses a company what each year, not a statement of "theft" defined in a particular way. "loss" not "theft", dum-dum!

U.S. had early signals of a terror plot, officials say

Same paper. Actually, the information was available but agencies failed to share it in a way that would have activated the red flags. Twas ever thus. Rest of article about the domestic politics of security in the US. Basically Obama has to blame everyone he can and then be seen to be doing something about it...which will mean more time standing in queues at airports. Oh and more pressure on the Uk to do something...anything!

Terror Enquiry looks at suspect's time in Britain

Odd article from the New York Times that seems to blame the UK for America's failure to share intelligence...."That view, if confirmed, would offer a stark reaffirmation that Britain, the United States’ closest ally, poses a major threat to American security. Critics say the British security forces have failed to adequately monitor and restrain the Islamic militancy that thrives in the vast network of mosques that serve the nation’s 1.5 million Muslims, and on university campuses across the country where nearly 100,000 of the 500,000 students are Muslims, including many, like Mr. Abdulmutallab, from overseas." Out of the woodwork come the Londonistan brigade. Yet hidden in the article is the admission that no-one can recognise a trigger point in radicalisation..a point at which a young Muslim moves from fundamentalist to fighter.

29 December 2009

HMIC Report on the policing of the G20 demonstrations

Contains an overview of the principles, political legal and practical of policing protest in the UK. Excellent piece of work.

Bob Quick's Evidence to the Parliamentary Committee on the Issue of Privilege

Fascinating statement by Bob Quick on the Damian Green affair. Worth close study.

Shoplifters take "hobby" online

Moscow Times piece on a community of shoplifters on LiveJournal. As some criminologists have argued, they do it for the "buzz". An obligatory priest is wheeled out to comment...

ETA preparing to kidnap a prominent person

Warning given by Rubalcaba, Spanish Minister of the Interior at meeting with Basque Minister for the Interior. Spanish article from El Pais.

28 December 2009

Europeans see corruption as major problem

Eurobarometer survey just out. Makes for depressing reading.

Eurojust Chief Quits over power Abuse Scandal

Portuguese prosecutor Jose da Moto resigns. The allegations against him don't enhance the reputation of the european judiciary or of Eurojust.

Al Qaeda group in Yemen gaining prominence

Good background piece from Washington Post on AlQ in the Yemen, where the alleged Christmas day bomber is supposed to have trained. Al Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula [AQAP] is a merger of Yemeni and Saudi operatives and may have attracted jihadists from several countries. Bin Laden's father was originally from the Yemen.

Black Economies Shore up States says Study

Report is by Deutsche Bank. Sounds like Machiavelli. Either be totally honest or totally dishonest to benefit.

27 December 2009

SOCA under fire by MPs

The Serious and Organised Crime Agency is being criticised for the rise in cocaine use in the UK, which MPs claim is against the trend for the rest of Europe

The British connection: Italian mafia finds Britain good for doing business

Group within Camorra using Uk for money-laundering and as a refuge for members on the run. Guardian article.

26 December 2009

Civilian, military planners have different views on new approach to Afghanistan

Washington Post article on the implementation of Obama's strategy for Afghanistan, which it says is being interpreted differently by civilian and military personnel. If true, it reads like a recipe for disaster. The problem is that the US military has a long tradition of ignoring the civilian politicians...and of maverick generals. Worth pinning on the wall and rereading over the next two years as matters develop.

Chinese border town emerges as new front line in fight gainst human trafficking

Washington Post article on Ruili on the China-Burma/Myanmar border. Allegedly, the traffic is two way.

Muslim leaders try to counter radicals' influence on youths

This is a follow-up story to the arrest of a group of 5 youths from North Virginia in Pakistan. Allegedly they were recruited via the Internet.

Italy Tax Amnesty nets 80 bn euros

You may have to register to read FT articles. At the moment it's still free. The attitude of Swiss banks to this amnesty is worth noting as is the Itlian refusal to say whether any money has been repatriated.

"al Qaeda links" suspect probed over plane "attack"

Early days on this story. Suspect is a Nigerian studying at UCL, the story alleges and was on a suspects list but not on a no-fly list. Explosives strapped to upper leg. More airport hold-ups to come.

21 December 2009

La France va remettre les fichiers voles a HSBC a la justice Suisse

A rare example of the Swiss demanding to know something in order to prosecute someone.My French is inadequate, but if the French dont tell them, they [the Swiss} wil discontinue their [a]greed cooperation against tax fraud. This is aimed at Herve Falciani who is a whistleblower who left France with the details of many tax evaders stored on his laptop. The Swiss want the data back...but the clients are clients of HSBC...Now let me see...If you dont give us back the information on tax fraud, we wont cooperate with you on tax fraud...Ah! It all makes sense immediately! The Swiss are just being consistent!

19 December 2009

US arrests three Africans in "al Qaeda cocaine sting"

Intriguing story. Americans pretending to be FARC [so that proves theyre drug smugglers] approach three guys from Mali, who are suuposed to be associates [whatever that means] of al Qaeda's Northern African branch [whatever that is] [and which will be used to prove that al Qaeda smuggles drugs]. Its a good one. None of it needs to be true but it will be used by academic/journalists as "evidence" of all sorts of stuff, like organised crime terrorism and financing are all interlinked. We shall see what happens in the trial.

17 December 2009

Russia: Shift to the shadows

Nice piece in the FT on the role of the silovki under Putin and Medvedev. Turns out to be based on an article in post-Soviet Affairs: “Putin’s Militocracy”, by Olga Kryshtanovskaya and Stephen White. Post-Soviet Affairs 2003, 19, 4

16 December 2009

Ministers creating an army of private police

The Independent's spin on yesterdays post includes the fact that lots of council emplyees have been given powers to confiscate property along with private security sneaking unannounced into traditional polcie roles....We're all coppers now! Dont you go taking any photographs without my permission!

Met was dysfunctional says Commissioner

Some interesting comments on the state the Commissioner found the organisation in when he took over. Radio interview for the Today programme.

15 December 2009

Unease as security groups take police roles

Interesting that this is in the Financial Times, so it must be a business matter. Private security running cells at demonstrations and also getting into investigation work. ACPO untroubled...well, theyre looking for retirement jobs themselves arent they? Lots of retired officers getting into the sector...Could it be that theyre retiring too early???

14 December 2009

Europe moves towards single area on justice and home affairs

Details of the Stockholm programme for the next five years

13 December 2009

Drug money saved banks in global crisis, claims UN advisor

Bit of a tabloid presentation by the Guardian. Under the hype, it emerges that the head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime thinks a lot of money was laundered durimng the crisis. Must find the original text of his speech.

09 December 2009

Top 5 security trends of the next decade

Conclusions of data security firm, Imperva. Pretty much what's already going on...no massive insight as yet as to what might be new!

08 December 2009

Lancashire police shut down roads into the county fom Merseyside to stop travelling ciminal gangs

Other police forces breathalyse people. Lancashire have their firearms teams out and blockade all roads from Merseyside and Manchester. You couldnt make it up! Nicking posh cars to attack cash in transit and speed off down the motorway!

05 December 2009

Warning over sheep poaching gangs

In deepest darkest Devon, gangs of poachers are using cross-bred lurchers to hunt meat to order for their customers. Wonder who these customers are?

04 December 2009

New edition of our Newsletter out!

In this special issue, dedicated to the SGOC?s First International Summer School on Organized crime (ISSOC), you will find:

* An overview of the first ISSOC in Catania 2009, with:

- Short summaries of the lectures of all keynote speakers;

- Three papers written by participants, presenting a very interesting insight into organized crime related problems dealt with from various cultural and professional backgrounds. Their work reflects perfectly the international and multidisciplinary atmosphere of the first ISSOC;

- Some pictures that bring the ISSOC to life for those who weren?t there.

* A preview of the next ISSOC in Leuven, July 2010: confirmed speakers, an insight into the program and links to some additional information.

03 December 2009

Police close scam websites

What on earth is an Ugg boot anyway? 1,200 websites offering cheap goods closed down. Run by Asian gangs and not a good idea to hand them your credit card details.

Police not spending more time on patrol

A piece on the government's white paper on policing and the police response to spending cuts. Suddenly, ACPO wants mergers. But mergers didnt happen last time because the Treasury refused to foot the costs. Mergers are not a short-term solution and short-term savings are the requirement of the day. Wake up anmd smell the coffee ACPO!