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operate in some of these communities – if these networks are not smashed prior to or simultaneously with the implementation of these programmes and projects. We therefore suggest that a major strategic objective is to smash organized crime.

The reasons for this are:

Organized crime serves to advertise the success of crime, including violent crime.  Its leaders are high profile models of material success whom others try to emulate.

They command considerable means of violence.

They are able to use their criminally-acquired wealth to corrupt some of the key institutions of the country including the Police Force, elements in the state bureaucracy and the political parties.

They have made a successful business of violence.  Successful extortion rackets are ample evidence of this. The successful rooting out of organized crime would clear the ground for inner-city renewal and successful youth employment projects that may involve attracting private sector firms to inner-city areas. To crush organized crime, however, requires:

Appropriate legal instruments that would allow the State to seize their criminally-acquired assets and to arrest entire groups of criminal conspirators, that is, to close down the criminal firm.  This would take the profits out of crime. An assets forfeiture act “with teeth” is now likely to be passed, giving the criminal justice system the power to do this. This is likely to be more effective than killing the dons who are easily replaced.  

Cutting its links to the political parties and via the parties to the State. These links are a source of its wealth and ability to launder criminally-acquired money. These links are also a source of its power in the communities of the urban poor.

These linkages are strongest and most problematic in the garrisons. It is here that the crime networks are able to entrench themselves and to secure safe havens. De-garrisoning is thus an important element in any strategy to crush organized crime.

Controlling police corruption and improving the investigative capacity and competences of the Force. It is partly this corrupt link that guarantees it impunity or freedom from successful prosecution. We will return to these issues in the next section of the report. We have highlighted the problems presented by organized crime because it is a driver of the process that makes crime successful and attractive and it is a prime source of violence.  But as noted earlier, there is also a more generalized problem of violence in the

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