Today I have seen a comment in Zaphira`s post about something that happened to her today. At one point she said that in Denmark, if people are rich, there is a possibility of being a victim of criminal gangs from Eastern Europe, for instance gangs from ex-Yugoslavia. Of course I think she didn`t mean anything bad about me with that remark. But the fact she mentioned that, made me make this post (thanks Zaph 😀 )
I Googled a bit about the topic and have read a lot of interesting texts. I know that some gangs were operated in countries of western Europe from 70s and 80s, but even then, most known and best organized gangs were from Albania, Italy and northern Africa. Iron curtain between west and east part of Europe worked very well and gangs mostly "swam in their own waters". With breaking of a famous Wall in Berlin, waters got mixed and a lot of fish changed their territory. I remember, when I was in Berlin in December of 1990. some Berliners were not satisfied with breaking a wall, saying that a lot of criminals from East Germany came and that criminal rate was raising. I was too young to think deeper about that (and I thought that persons who told me that were exaggerating 😛 ). And my country, Yugoslavia, still existed back then…
Wars in Balkan, except for producing 6 independent countries and one UN-protected region, made a new generation of criminals who were "educated" in war zones. When I was a kid, I knew that some kind of code existed among gangs in Belgrade, probably in whole Yugoslavia as well. They were separated by the area where they operated (mostly, they were born in a same areas) and coexisted. Using of firearms was rare and they had their ways of solving disagreements. During 90s, all codes dissapeared. In the darkest times, firearms were used even in daily clashes, resulting dead criminals and innocent people. One criminal has said to a reporter of one newspapers that Serbia is a "small pond with a lot of crocodiles" – and it was a best description about criminal gangs here I have ever heard.
Naturaly, some of crocodiles needed to "change waters" so the logical choice was western Europe. Being ruthless, there were no problems to organize all sorts of activities – from pickpocketing to people traficking, drugs and prostitution. Some of them started to work for bosses who resided there already, some of them killed previous bosses and took their places – being more ruthless. Some of them started to work together with gangs from Albania, Kosovo, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldavia, Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Turkie, you name it. I`ve read some reports from Barcelona that pickpocketing is so profitable that one small criminal from Moldavia had 25 wallets at the moment when he was arrested. And it was a prey from only one morning :yikes: I do really hope Rose is taking good care of herself :left:
More dangerous are drug smugglers and person trafficking gangs. There is an information that 500.000 illegal immigrants are entering Europe every year and they are paying 4000 USD as average fee for a transfer. The worst thing is that penalties are not hard enough to stop it and that main bosses don`t even reside in countries where most of their profit is coming from. Also, they are using different electronic devices for tracking police and avoiding ambushes. They will leave their "cargo" (or push it in the sea) if there is danger for them to be arrested. It is usual to have bribed member of police or customs in the areas of border crossing.
Smuggling drugs is organized different – in south of Europe this kind of crime is organised by south Americans, mostly Columbians, but in the north there are gangs from Russia and Kosovo. Of course, it may be not quite accurate, because south Italian gangs are still active, no matter how much eastern European gangs pushed them aside. There were some stories in our newspapers about excellent cooperation between gangs from Montenegro and Italy.
According to my opinion, the most dangerous are contract killers. They spent years in Balkan wars, becoming very skillful in a lot of ways of taking lives – from silent murders by cold weapons and sniper riffles to explosives and automatic weapon ambushing. Yesterday enemies became good co-workers. The last example is assasination of owner of newspaper magazine in Croatia and his associate, with planted explosive. Main suspect is from Bosnia, it seems he was helped by some people from Serbia and Croatia and killing was probably ordered from Monetengro, maybe even Italy.
It feels bad when someone from abroad recognize your country by the crime their citizen do all over the world. I had a personal experience, about 16 years ago, with some people from Sweden. The moment they heard that I am from Serbia, they moved away from me like I was infectious. I can`t blame them, probably they have heard bad stories in the news. War, crime and stuff. But I felt bad and angry at the same time. No matter what you do and how nice your behaviour is, at least one label will remain.
Like a curse.
Blogs I Follow
- Thrifty Campers
- A Walk with Wildlife
- The Spryte's blog
- The View From My Bowl
- Humanity in Syria is at risk
- Make every day a little bit special ♥
- Robin's Robins
- coisart's canvas
- A Sneak Peek On Things I Like
- A Canadian in Ireland
- The Fish Tank
- This Insubstantial Pageant Faded
- der Wandersmann