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Anticipating and Combating Ukrainian Organized Crime

NCJ Number
Date Published
6 pages
This federally supported research paper provides a brief introduction to the primary conclusions and recommendations on transnational organized crime in Ukraine and the prevention of transnational organized crime in Ukraine.
Findings indicate that: (1) within the state of Ukraine, organized crime operates in different ways depending on the geographical context; (2) it is clear that different types of organized criminal entities operate within Ukraine; (3) it is clear that while some transnational criminal organizations operate in and through Ukraine, the country itself is also the base from which Ukrainian criminal organizations operate across a variety of national borders; (4) the other important characteristic of organized crime in Ukraine is that it involves what has been termed the political-criminal nexus; and (5) there is the issue of empirical measurements of Ukrainian organized crime. It remains difficult to determine unequivocally whether organized crime in Ukraine is an increasingly important problem or is being contained and becoming a smaller, more modest challenge. Ukraine’s criminal justice response to organized crime remains embedded in its Soviet past, with the Soviet period heavily influencing many of Ukraine’s legislation and criminal justice structures. From the findings and response, several recommendations were identified and included: (1) the need for an overall strategy for fighting organized crime with clear objectives and a comprehensive approach; (2) environmental modification through regulatory approaches; (3) the development of partnerships between government and law enforcement and the private sector; (4) the need to incorporate a capacity for learning about what works; (5) targeting the political-criminal nexus in all its manifestations; (6) the privatization of major Ukrainian economic sectors; and (7) the development of an effective intelligence system. This paper provides a brief introduction to the primary conclusions of this research program which set out to identify the types and severity of transnational organized crime in Ukraine, to delineate the response of the Ukrainian Government, and to develop a set of recommendations for strengthening the efforts to combat organized crime in Ukraine.

Date Published: January 1, 2000