28 July 2013

Will Russian Hackers Cause the Next Financial Crisis?

Nice piece with several links to related articles.

Altered Images: Egypt's disinformation war

Interesting that the BBC can criticise propaganda from Egypt, but failed to do the same for some of the equally invented images from Libya and syria. Surely it's not all about taking sides? Emoticon with Groucho Marx eyebrows...

24 July 2013

List of 100 hacking firms given to MPs is ‘the tip of the iceberg’

Press getting worked up about this issue as the Leveson inquiry has concentrated on their invasions of privacy. It is turning out that SOCA knew about other companies in the commercial world doing exactly the same thing. They don't want to tell M.Ps too much about it. Wonder if they discussed it with the Director of Public Prosecutions?

22 July 2013

Whitey Bulger Case Puts Boston Mythology on Trial

Whimsical piece on organised crime, politics and the FBI in Boston...with a stress on all this being in the past

20 July 2013

Here's the original Private Eye report

The BBC report is absolutely shocking. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-23341818 especially when you read it in conjunction with the later report from the Independent that I posted earlier.

Police apologise for ‘harassment’ of forensic graduate

Repeat after me: "you have nothing to fear if you are innocent". Complete abuse of power by police officers, preventing a young woman from getting a job as a result of them harassing her and putting their harassment on the databases such that she turns up as a problem on a CRB check...and they STILL havent removed stuff from the necessary databases, despite admitting disciplining the oficers and apologising. Full story was in Private Eye. Smears followed in other parts of the press.

18 July 2013

Chan's chutzpah hits geomancers hard

Hints of all sort of fraud and related criminality here...but the full story isn't told...presumably laws of slander and libel keep stuff quiet?

17 July 2013

As police arrest British fugitives in Spain, are the days of the Costa del Crime numbered?

Piece I missed in the Guardian a couple of days ago. the end of Spain as a refuge and the likelihood of Thailand or even Romania becoming havens for British organised criminals on the run.

Coffee shops and compromise

An assessment of the state of Dutch drug policy

Home site of Ameripol

All about Ameripol...in Spanish, of course!

Spanish police arrest Briton in transatlantic cocaine gang swoop

Interesting mention of Ameripol, which I first heard of in Onati at last week's workshop on cross-border police cooperation. Soca quoted as saying that 52 of 65 wanted fugitives known to be in Spain have now ben arrested.

Who's who of the murderous Mexican drug wars

Piece in the Independent listing the cartels

Further piece on capture of Trevino

Included primarily because of the map provided and the brief discussion of whether a decapitation strategy against drug gangs might actually make the situation worse.

16 July 2013

'Neo-Nazi' singer Vikernes in French terror arrest

We shall see. His wife bought four rifles, and had a permit. He's a heavy metal musician and a foreigner. So far that's the evidence...Oh and he has previous for killing someone with a knife and burning down churches, according to the BBC.

Profile: the brutal cartel boss who took sadistic killing to new levels

Background on the Zetas and their captured and therefore probably ex-leader

Mexico Zetas leader Miguel Angel Trevino captured

Lets just hope there isnt someone every bit as brutal waiting to step into his shoes...

15 July 2013

At Commerce Dept., false alarm on cyberattack cost almost $3 million

You have to say that the IT department should have done better! Or did the management panic. Dilbert, where art thou?

The Case for Abolishing the DHS

This piece from Bloomberg. Save money. abolish the department of Homeland Security. Neo-libs vs neo-cons...its the final countdown!

Slavery is a $32bn industry so why aren't we following the money trail?

Lady Goudie argues that money laundering legislation is not properly framed to be used as a weapon against human trafficking

UK’s 2014 Opt-out Decision (Protocol 36)

These are the materials from the House of lords European select Committee that relate to the proposed opt-out by the UK from justice and home affairs cooperation prior to opting back into some of the measures. All to do with police cooperation and the Treaty of Lisbon.

Hundreds of police from across UK to be deployed to Belfast after loyalist violence flares for third night

This is one of the phenomena of the situation in Northern Ireland after the peace process. The hard men of the Protestant community continue to hold their parades and riot when they can't go where they want when they want. It is still a divided society, riddled with organised crime groups. the interesting thing here though, is that a policing problem is now being dealt with by mutual aid ie the "borrowing" of police officers from elsewhere in the UK rather than the Army.

Boko Haram leader calls for more schools attacks after dorm killings

Just to keep a sense of balance after the previous piece. This is what the extremists are doing in Northern Nigeria.

Obama's secret kill list – the disposition matrix

Scary title, but the article contains some insights into various powers of the Home Secretary and some case studies of individual alleged "extremists". the description of Obama's weekly meeting on who is going to die next is reminiscent of Stalin at his creepiest. It's all rather Wild West...Wyatt Earp gone high tech. Once these procedures have been in place for a while, it will be very difficult to return to something we can call "normal". Bin Laden continues to undermine democracy from beyond the grave.

13 July 2013

Italian mayoress who took on the 'Ndrangheta mafia

She resigned once, was persuaded to rescind her resignation and has now given up after little or no assistance.

12 July 2013

Great Train Robbery: How Bruce Reynolds became a writer

13th July 20.00 BST, Radio 4: the crime of the century. All about the Great Train robbery, cos it's the 50th anniversary

Link to the actual article posted below

The paper argues that kinship ties and sharing information on violent acts can be
interpreted as forms of ‘hostage-taking’ likely to increase cooperation among co-
offenders. The paper tests this hypothesis among members of two criminal groups,
a Camorra clan based just outside Naples, and a Russian Mafia group that moved
to Rome in the mid-1990s. The data consist of the transcripts of phone intercepts
conducted on both groups by the Italian police over several months. After
turning the data into a series of network matrices, we use Multivariate Quadratic
Assignment Procedure to test the hypothesis. We conclude that the likelihood of
cooperation is higher among members who have shared information about violent
acts. Violence has a stronger effect than kinship in predicting tie formation and thus
cooperation. When non-kinship-based mechanisms fostering cooperation exist,
criminal groups are likely to resort to them

Violence as a Source of Trust in Mafia-type Organizations

Link from a blog to new article by Campana and Varese in Rationality and Society. I'm particularly interested as I have just returned from a workshop on trust and international police cooperation in Onati, the Basque Country