Human trafficking occurs through clandestine or deceptive activities, avoiding legal border controls, and through the use of fraudulent documents. Illegal smuggling or trafficking hinders the safety and well-being of Americans since it has a negative influence on both the regional and national security ("Multinational Operations," 2011). Illegal smuggling more than trafficking of humans has become one of the major areas for organized crime operations in America because of its link to other areas like drug trafficking and corruption of government officials.
The second major area for the operations of organized crime in America is drug trafficking that has been expanded by these networks in the recent past. This is regardless of the recent effective counter-drug measures, especially against cocaine. While illicit drugs are still a major threat to the health, security, financial well-being, and safety of Americans; the demand for these drugs in America has fueled the power and violence of organized crime networks. Due to the increased demand of illegal drugs in the country, drug trafficking has become a main area for organized crime operations in the United States.
In addition to the above mentioned areas, corruption in governmental agencies and institutions, intellectual property theft, cyberspace, and trafficking of weapons are also other areas of organized crime operations in the United States ("Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime," 2011).
Types of Criminal Organizations operating in the U.S.:
There are various types of criminal organizations that operate in the United States including the following
Terrorist groups are one of the major types of criminal organizations that operate from within and without the borders of the United States. Terrorist groups are mainly divided into two categories i.e. domestic terrorist groups and the global terrorist groups. While domestic terrorist groups are regarded as criminal organizations that have established bases in the United States, the global terrorist groups are those located in other countries across the globe. Some examples of the domestic terrorist organization include the Black Liberation Army whereas Al Qaeda Network is an example of the global terrorist group.
Organized Crime Networks:
These are the second type of criminal organizations operating in the United States whose main objective is to obtain money from their illegal activities. Some examples of the organized crime networks or organizations include Italian Cosa Nostra, Chinese Tongs, Japanese Yakuza, and Balkan crime groups.
Measures for Combating Organized Crime:
One of the most effective way for fighting organized crime like cybercrime, terrorism, drug and human trafficking, and corruption is through improved intelligence gathering and information sharing in the federal government ("Combating Transnational Organized Crime," 2011). Notably, enhancing intelligence gathering and information sharing should be conducted in collaboration with the law enforcement agencies in all governmental levels.
The other measures that have been suggested to combat organized crime in the United States include taking shared responsibility for organized crime, strengthening interdiction, investigations and prosecutions, and developing international capacity, partnerships and cooperation. Additional strategies include protecting the nation's financial system and strategic markets as well as interrupting drug trafficking and its facilitation.
Organized crime has developed to become a major national security issue as it has continued to evolve because of improved communication technologies and economic globalization. The crime is not conducted by various criminal organizations that operate in various areas in the United States resulting in the need for effective combative measures.
"Combating Transnational Organized Crime." (2011, July 25). Public Affairs -- Homeland
Security. Retrieved from U.S. Department of Homeland Security website http://blog.dhs.gov/2011/07/combating-transnational-organized-crime.html
Finklea, K.M. (2010, December 22). Organized Crime in the United States: Trends and Issues
for Congress. Retrieved March 19, 2012, from http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R40525.pdf
"Multinational Operation Targets Transnational Organized Crime." (2011). American Forces
Press Service. Retrieved from U.S. Department of Defense website: http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=67109
"Organized Crime -- Overview." (n.d.). The FBI. Retrieved from the Federal Bureau of Investigations website: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/organizedcrime/overview
"Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime." (2011, July 19). Addressing Converging
Threats to National Security. Retrieved from United States Government website: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/Strategy_to_Combat_Transnational_Organized_Crime_July_2011.pdf