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Organized Crime Around The World Essay

2346 words - 9 pages

When people think of organized crime they think of the Italian mob and the Russian mafia. They are the ones that they see in movies and on television, and the ones that they hear about the most. However, they were created a couple centuries after their Asian counterparts, the Yakuza in Japan, and the Triads in China. These Asian syndicates were founded in the sixteenth and seventeenth century and consisted of merchants and other people in what was basically the middle class. They were just groups of poorer people who were just looking for protection or were trying to help other people. The first organized crime syndicates were a kind of Robin Hood, they helped the poor. They weren’t big or powerful, and they didn’t have large numbers. The Italian mob was the same way, small numbers and very little power. Over time though, these organizations began to grow beyond even what their founders pictured. As this started to happen, and these organizations became more of a nuisance, governments started to take notice. They began trying to stop them by either slowing the growth or causing them to cease existence. Despite efforts to eradicate organized crime, it is stronger than ever.
In the early part of the twentieth century, organized crime began to pop up in the United States with a similar structure to current days. Prohibition caused men to begin the manufacturing and distribution of alcohol under the government’s radar. There was one name that stood out from all the others, Al Capone a.k.a. “Scarface.” Capone set the stage for organized crime in America and thrust it into the spotlight. It wouldn’t be for a couple decades though that the larger groups would begin to have a significant presence in the US. As America opened its borders in the latter half of the twentieth century, people began flocking to the states Italians who had been here since the twenties now had more connection to their home and therefore the Sicilian Mafia. The Russians began moving over during the Cold War to escape the conditions in their country. Organized crime is now in every major city in the US. The heaviest presence is in New York City, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Chicago. The most well-known group though, is still the Italian Mafia.
The Italian Mafia in the U.S. can trace its origins all the way back to the Sicilian Mafia which was founded in Sicily during the 1800’s (Italian Organized Crime). After thousands of years of different armies with different nationalities conquering Italy and exploiting its people, the Sicilians became to be more clannish and family focused. Originally they were just resistance fighters that were protecting their friends and family. They were relied on for protection, justice, and survival. Nobody cared if they got money from it because it came from the oppressive authorities. Members of these groups were known as “Men of Honor” and they were well respected and even admired because they looked out for their family and kept silent sometimes...

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