Linkages of organized crime with terrorism

Mutually beneficial partnership (Terrorist groups and Syndicate Criminals)

  • While organized crime involves many activities, its linkages with terrorism stem from illegal trafficking of drugs, arms and human beings and money laundering. Terrorist groups, whether indigenous or sponsored by outside states, need arms and money for their fight against the security forces. Organized crime conglomerates need a clientele and couriers who can smuggle drugs, arms and human beings across the countries and regions.
  • Terror groups as they are anti-state, they cannot have control on legal source of money, hence takes help from the syndicate criminal gangs, as they can provide them legal investments. Terror groups make use of organized crimes for terror finance.

Help in Trans-border Terrorism

  • In India, the linkages between the two exist at national and transnational levels. At the national level, both terrorist and those involved in organized crime are within India. At the international level, collaboration exists between transnational syndicates and terrorists from inside and outside India.
  • In India’s northeast, almost all the militant groups run a parallel government or have their areas of influence and are involved in collecting money directly from the people. Much of the government funds reach the militants indirectly due to misgovernance. Government officials in conflict zones are either threatened or bribed to award contracts to individuals patronized by the militant groups. contracts apart, essential commodities like rice and kerosene reach the militant groups directly which are then sold to the public at much higher prices. This cycle, though unnoticed in other parts of India, is a clear example of the linkage between organized crime and terrorism inside India.

For terror groups, Organized crime helps to take the covert activities through the country.

  • Extortion, kidnap, contracts and black marketing still fall short of financing the nefarious activities of the militants. This is where transnational drugs and arms syndicates come into play. Terrorist organizations in India, especially in the northeast, mobilize funds by becoming couriers of illegal drugs and arms and at times even human beings from one point to another within the country.
  • In Kashmir, the linkages between terrorists and organized crime exist at a different level. Unlike the northeast, reliance on funds from extortion and other related means is minimal. There is no parallel government in Kashmir and government resources do not reach militant hands. However, external funds compensate for inadequate internal mobilization.
  • Money laundering plays a significant role. Hawala (money laundering) transactions take place swiftly and effectively in Kashmir.
  • Spread of counterfeit currency. Terrorists are the main couriers of Indian counterfeit currency inside Kashmir, which then spreads all over India.

Terror groups maintain linkages with organized crimes to get safe advice sanctuaries.

Why does Organized crime support Terrorist Groups?

  • Organized crime obtains weapons and arms from the terrorist groups.
  • Terror groups are the easy way of carrying mechanisms like drugs, smuggling operations.
  • To settle rivalries.
  • Criminal activities of Organized criminal gangs can be passed off as terrorist activities to confuse the law and judiciary systems.
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