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What are the various legal tools now available to cope with the organized crime problem

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Running Head: Tools Available to Cope with Organized Crime Organized Crime

Abstract

This paper will examine the legal tools that are available today to combat organized crime in United States of America. This paper also gives a historical perspective of the present days Acts.

Organized Crime

Introduction

Organized Crime has been defined as an illegal pattern of activity conducted by a consortium of people and/or organizations, acting in concert, to carry out fraud, theft, extortion, intimidation, and a host of other offenses in a syndicated fashion. (Falcone, 2005: 187). The criminals often give a legal front face to their activities They also cross country boundaries to take advantage of any inadequacies in law enforcement and the legal system of the foreign land. To handle such wide spread operations the organized crime groups use the most hi-tech facilities available in communication equipments, computers, transport and arms.
This paper examines the various legal tools available to combat the organized crime groups. It first gives a historical perspective and then examines the recent initiatives by the US federal agencies to combat organized crime.

Historical Perspective
In 1968 the U. S. Congress enacted the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act. This was followed by the Organized Crime Control Act (OCCA) in 1970. The most important feature of this act was a federal law called the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) which was enacted by section 901(a) of the Organized Crime Control Act. This act provides for extended penalties and people found guilty under this act can be sentenced up to 20 years in prison.
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) was introduced in 1978. It deals with procedures for the physical and electronic surveillance.
Legal Tools against Organized Crime
The Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (also known as AEDPA) was signed by President Bill Clinton. It provides for justice against crimes and act of terrorism. Person found guilty under this act can be given a life sentence.
The Financial Anti-Terrorism Act (H. R. 3004) was introduced in 2001 to sentence criminals engaged in ill legal money practices and money laundering. The United States Trade Rights Enforcement Act (H. R. 3283), caters for fraud against illegal trade and intellectual property rights issues Many U. S. anti-piracy initiatives involve international agreements, often through the World Trade Organization (WTO). The Bipartisan Trade Promotion Act of 2002 (P. L. 107-210). 67 caters for such anti piracy laws with all partner nations. The Foreign Relations Authorization Act and The Nuclear Black Market Elimination Act, provides for actions that can be taken in cases of black marketing of any nuclear material or related cases.
Post September 11 2001 The USA PATRIOT Act was signed by US President. It was to cater for all terrorist activities on US soil and made amendments to immigration laws, banking laws, money laundering laws and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Among other things, it increases penalties for financing terrorist activities and place greater restrictions on certain money-transferring businesses. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA) is another Act introduced on 17 December 2004. The Act pertains to reforms in intelligence agencies like The Federal Bureau of Investigation, terrorism prevention, border protection, immigration, and visa matters. In early 2006, the U. S. A. President signed the USA Patriot Improvement and Reauthorization Act. This act was signed to refine the scope of USA Patriot Act.
Works Cited
Organized crime Research http://www. organized-crime. de/index. html

Falcone, David N., Prentice Hall’s Dictionary of American Criminal Justice, Criminology, & Criminal Justice, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, 2005.

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