Global Crime Perspectives

Global Crime Perspectives

Crime & Expansion of Technology

From a global perspective, crime has expanded at an unprecedented rate due to the expansion of technology. The same process of globalization that allows for companies to expand internationally has also allowed criminal enterprises to grow and expand at the global level. This trend in global crime is not likely to decrease and the result of this expansion in crime equates to:

• Increasing and ever-changing cyber crime
• Rises in identity theft and financial crimes and new methods of fraud
• Terrorist attack attempts from homegrown jihadists
• Continuing challenges to recruit and retain the best candidates for law enforcement employment
• Increasing diversity in police ranks (Wallentine, 2009)

These outcomes resulting from globalization, have led to the changing trends in criminal justice.

Human Resources

One of the major issues with meeting the problems of globalization is that law enforcement is not prepared for it. Law enforcement must address this problem of recruiting and hiring human resources that have the skill sets to deal with these forms of crime. More tech savvy and skilled workers officers will be needed. This has already started another trend in law enforcement hiring which is the privatization of many areas of technology and forensics. This has occurred because it is less expensive to hire companies to process evidence and work on technology issues than it is to have full time software and hardware engineers on staff.

Forensics and Methods

Globalization has led to massive changes in crime fighting. The two most notable areas of change are in surveillance and forensics. Advancements in technologies such as drones and computer software have increased efficiency in surveillance (Hapgood, 2006). The same technology that has spurred globalization has also led to the development of more effective surveillance such as object and facial recognition. It is likely that police agencies will continue to become smaller and more technologically reliant (Hapgood, 2006).

Forensics is another area of change in global criminal justice. The increased threat of terrorism has forced changes in technology in order to fight crime that can be more anonymous. For instance, cyber criminals have specific patterns of code that can identify them and often their countries of origin. Forensics continues to expand into other areas such as terrorist profiling, cybercrime, computer forensics and digital theft prevention (Forensic Control, 2013).

These technologies have been created in response to many crimes that are the result of globalization. These technologies are needed to identify and collect evidence on international criminal who are using computers to operate remotely or engaging in other crimes anonymously such as child pornography and human trafficking. While these crime fighting techniques are a great asset to criminal justice agencies, globalization presents challenges to the use of these tools due to differences in laws and jurisdictions.

Law: International Criminal Justice Systems

One of the major obstacles that criminal justice faces on a global scale is the issues of different laws and jurisdictions. To understand this problem one must understand the ideological differences in laws and how these differences impact enforcement of laws. There are four major ideological concepts that impact global criminal justice and these can have tremendous impact on ability of agencies to capture and prosecute criminals.

One of the most troublesome areas of international crime is the fact that what is considered a crime can change depending on the country one is in. This is due to the fact that there are different legal systems in each country and there are differences between crime which can result from interpretations. In the US and many western countries, civil law is the common framework that provides for laws governing such things as property and personal protections as well as conflict resolutions between parties. As such things such as divorce or child labor become matters of civil law.

The problem with law is that what might be considered a civil matter in the US might be considered a criminal matter in other countries. For example, Islamic Law is the prescribed law for most of the theocracies in the middle east. Everything from marriage to choice of religion is codified and in many instances these codes are criminal in nature. For example, if a person in Iran decides to change religion from Islam, this act is considered illegal and is punishable but imprisonment or death.

The constitution establishes Islam as the state religion, and requires all provisions of the law to be consistent with Islam. The constitution also states, “subject to law, public order, and morality, every citizen shall have the right to profess, practice, and propagate his religion.” The courts continued to enforce blasphemy laws, whose punishment ranges from life in prison to the death sentence for a range of charges, including “defiling the Prophet Muhammad.” (State Department, 2016).

Laws become even more complicated in terms of defining crime and punishment. In the US and in many western countries the system of common law exists which creates legal precedent based on past cases (Britannica, 2017). This is a highly complex area of law because past verdicts can often conflict and create difficulty in determining the outcome of a case. For example, a judge in the UK may rely on a common law verdict to render a decision which may conflict with a judgment or verdict that would be given in the US. As a result of this situation, what is considered a criminal judgment in one country may not apply as criminal in another. This situation is complicated further by differences in law due to political ideologies.

Unlike civil law which protects property and rights of individual, Socialist Law is a doctrine that protects the interest of the public over individuals. This is defined as:

The general goal of socialism is to maximize wealth and opportunity, or to minimize human suffering, through public control of industry and social services. Socialism is an alternative to capitalism, where the means and profits of production are privately held (Legal Dictionary, 2017).

Socialism is a major political ideology which is the controlling politics in China and many other nations. Even many western countries such as France have strong socialist beliefs. This impacts the enforcement of law globally because what is considered a crime in one place may not be in another. An example of this can be seen in copyright laws which in the US are taken very seriously. In countries such as China these laws have less meaning because the state owns everything. This makes the extradition and pursuit of international criminals complicated even in countries that are allied.

These differences in laws also create differences in policing throughout the world. For example, in countries such as Russia and China, citizens do not have rights that protect them in the manner that the US does. Search or property and citizens is often conducted without legal reason. This situation has led to many human rights issues and problems with criminal justice on a global scale.

In 1995 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina was portioned into the Bosnian Serb Republic and the Muslim-Croat Federation after a bloody civil war that led to the practice of ethnic cleansing and the killing of more than 200,000 Muslim people. So intense were the hostilities between Serbs and the Muslims and Croats that it would take the division of the original republic and 60,000 NATO soldiers to create and enforce the cease-fire and continued peace (Mayfield, 2008 ). Croats and Serbs denied that this was an act of genocide despite the fact that mass burial pits were identified by satellite. The Russians have practiced ethnic cleansing on multiple occasions since the fall of the Soviet Union. This has occurred twice with the Russians trying to control countries such as Georgia. Yet, Russia has not been accused or sanctioned in any way for these acts. But in the case of Rwanda, the entire world easily accepts the idea that genocide took place. The problem is that states such as Russia can act in their interest and are often not penalized as criminal activities because they instigate other groups to do their bidding. This is a severe issue in global crime because it is difficult to pinpoint who the culprits are and what actions can be taken. For this reason, globalization has presented many challenges to the enforcement of criminal justice on a global scale.


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Forensic Control. (2013, February 15). Review: Registry Recon. Retrieved from Forensic Control:

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Hapgood, F. (2006). Reverse- engineering the brain at mit, neuroscience and artificial intelligence are beginning to intersect. Technology Review, 43.

Legal Dictionary. (2017). Socialism. Retrieved from Legal Dictionary:

Mayfield, J. (2008 ). Evolving ethnic & religious history of the serbs, croats, & bosnians. Retrieved from Euroheritage:

Proof Finder. (2014). Proof Finder. Retrieved from Proof Finder: State Department. (2016). Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor International Religious Freedom Report for 2016: Pakistan. Retrieved from State Department:

Wallentine, K. (2009, December). Law enforcement trends to watch in 2010 and beyond. Retrieved from Police One: trends-to-watch-in-2010-and-beyond/

Photo by Mat Reding on Unsplash


Triola Vincent. Mon, Feb 01, 2021. Global Crime Perspectives Retrieved from

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