New Specialized Training on Global Threats to Justice, Peace and Security

Specialized course on transnational organized crime (16 - 20 October 2017)

Deadline for applications: 2 October 2017


Transnational organized crime is one of the major threats to development and security. Often considered the "dark side" of globalisation, its expansion is linked to the opportunities created by the global movements of goods and people. Acting as multinational corporations, criminal groups seek profit through the evaluation of countries' risks, benefits and markets analysis. The ability to constantly adapt to the changes at local and international levels, to create transnational networks and diversify activities in order to maximize the potential offered by globalisation are the main obstacles for all entities fighting organized crime. The problems generated by transnational organised crime transcend national boundaries and require coordinated action at the international level.

Organised crime weakens institutions and feeds underdevelopment, yet it is also fed by them. The lack of proper judicial and enforcement measures plays a strategic role in the growth of criminal syndicates' management of trafficking drugs, weapons, persons, counterfeit goods and money laundering. Strong institutional capacities as well as international cooperation are therefore crucial to address effectively organised crime syndicates. Proceeds from crimes are frequently used to corrupt government officials, which weakens the rule of law and paves the way for further criminal activities, creating a vicious circle of impunity. This, in turn, weakens government institutions, undermines sustainable economic development and delegitimizes the State.

As emphasised in Security Council Resolution 2199, organized crime is not a peripheral issue when it comes to investigating and combating terrorist activity. Terrorists are taking advance from transnational organized crime in many contexts and by conducting many illicit activities spanning from the trafficking of arms, persons, drugs, artefacts and natural resources; to the kidnapping for ransom and other crimes including extortion and bank robbery. The potential confluence of criminal and terrorist actors, tactics and resources enable them to accumulate the financial and political resources, became more resilient and gain stronger capacities to threaten peace, security and economic development. The interactions between terrorist and transnational organized criminal groups are not straightforward: each case is context specific and constantly evolving. There are terrorist organizations turning to crime to fund their operations or criminal and terrorist organisations presenting the characteristics of both groups simultaneously.

UNICRI supports countries in the promotion of strengthening the rule of law and institutions capabilities to fight against organized crime and in particular attacking criminal assets, dismantling networks, address impunity and improve protection of entrepreneurs to undermine organized crime’s power, economic capacity and territorial control.

The Institute promotes the implementation of international Convention against transnational organized through action-oriented research, training activities addressed to the judiciary and law enforcement and by promoting the exchange of information.


The training module aims to deepen participants’ knowledge of transnational organized crime’s infiltration in different contexts, the modus operandi and conditions that facilitate the syndicates’ expansion. The training path will also focus on legal frameworks to prevent and counter transnational organized crime, good practices and lesson learned as well as the role of sharing of information and international cooperation to counter criminal networks.

The following issues will be addressed during the course:

  • What is organized crime
  • Global organized crime development and challenges
  • International conventions against transnational organized crime 
  • Legal and practical responses to combat organized crime
  • Nexus between organized crime and terrorism
  • Emerging crimes
  • Case study: the Italian mafia

The lecturers are law enforcement officers, prosecutors, judges, and other practitioners from national, regional and international organization dealing with transnational organized crime and counter-terrorism.

Course information

The course is designed for university graduates in Law, Political Science, International Relations, Economics, Social Science, Public Policy and other relevant disciplines. It is also suited to professionals working in governmental institutions, local authorities, international and non-governmental organizations. Candidates must have a very good working knowledge of English.

The course will last 5 days. Upon full completion of the course the UNICRI will grant a Certificate of participation.

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