What can we learn from the future of organized crime?

Have been reading a bit about the future of organized crime. Fascinatingly crime is changing as our culture changes. The older traditional crime structures such as the Mafia and the Japanese Yakuza are struggling. Traditional organized crime structures thrive in migrant neighbourhoods with high social cohesion.  However as social connection breaks down a more liquid way of living takes hold, and as gentrification transforms inner city neighbourhoods; traditional organized crime structures are finding it hard to recruit younger members and flourish in the 21st century.

However a new kind of organized crime is developing in the West one that does not obey the traditional modes and rules. This new form of organized crime has its roots in the developing world, be it Central America, Nigeria or former Soviet Bloc countries. Whereas the old organized crime structures worked on systems of honour, commitment, hierarchy, central control and a strict set of rules, the new structures tend to be more cellular, chaotic and anarchic.

A classic example of this new kind of organized crime structured is the central American gang MS -13 which some law enforcement experts have labelled the Al Qeada of Central America. The gangs growth has been phenomenal, and the gang now has tens of thousands of members, and has now spread out of central America into South America, North America and Europe.     

Is it just me or does all of this sound familiar?

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