International crime fighter doubles-down on illicit trade
Crime Stoppers International (CSI) has strengthened its commitment to identifying and reducing the scourge of illicit trade with the development and release of a new and free online course.
CSI Chief Executive Officer, Shane Britten, commended the three-module course to anyone wanting to understand the impact of illicit trade; recognise the indicators of illicit trade activity; and take pro-active steps to reduce this criminal behaviour.
“Crime Stoppers International is committed to doing all it can, in collaboration with our law enforcement, corporate and civil society partners, to identify and reduce illicit trade. It isn’t just about the direct harm caused by the goods being trafficked, but also the secondary crimes associated with illicit trade, including modern slavery, human trafficking, looting and trading in cultural artefacts, wildlife crime, corruption and even terrorism,”
“This latest offering from CSI Learning (www.csiworld.org/learning) is self-paced, participants receive a certificate on completion, and there is no prior learning prerequisite – making the course ideal for anyone looking for a broad introduction into the insidious nature of illicit trade,” noted Mr Britten.
The three modules begin with an examination of illicit trade – why it is a problem and how does tackling illicit trade support the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Module Two explores the trade in illicit tobacco to better understand the scope and scale of illicit trade for a specific product area; and the final module discusses Free Trade Zones – what they are and how they impact illicit trade – and concludes with a list of positive actions for participants to consider.
Illicit trade is not a victimless crime – it involves a complex web of criminality that impacts everyone.
Like all organised crime, illicit trade has motivated, sophisticated and ruthless criminal groups behind it. In most cases, the item being smuggled, counterfeited or traded is irrelevant. It has been chosen because of the potential profit and the relatively low risk associated with the activity.
“If there is a demand for an illicit product – whether its wildlife, tobacco or alcohol, endangered cultural heritage items, or sporting and luxury goods – organised crime groups will seize the opportunity to supply it,” explained Mr Britten.
“Illicit trade is a major and growing problem worldwide. And, while difficult to measure, almost every sector of society and every product category is affected by illicit trade. The impact on legitimate businesses is enormous; and the loss of taxation revenue means governments have less funding for critical infrastructure projects and essential services, such as roads, hospitals and schools.”
Shane Britten, CEO Crime Stoppers International