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Serious organised crime

Serious Organised Crime affects us all and we all have a part to play in reducing the harm it causes. It costs the Scottish economy and society billions of pounds each year, and includes drugs, human trafficking and fraud.

On June 18 2015, Scotland’s Serious Organised Crime Strategy was published. It refreshes “Letting Our Communities Flourish”, the first Serious Organised Crime strategy for Scotland, which was published in 2009.

The refreshed strategy is about all of Scotland working together to reduce the harm caused by Serious Organised Crime. It is about detecting and disrupting Serious Organised Crime Groups, but most of all it is about preventing it at source: cutting off the markets, the recruits and the opportunities on which Serious Organised Crime relies. The refreshed strategy has four strands:

  • To divert people from becoming involved in Serious Organised Crime and using its products;

  • To deter Serious Organised Crime Groups by supporting private, public and third sector organisations to protect themselves and each other;

  • To identify, detect and prosecute those involved in Serious Organised Crime; and

  • To disrupt Serious Organised Crime Groups

Further measures to tackle Serious Organised Crime include:

  • Continuing to develop work with the Serious Organised Crime Taskforce which was established to ensure all key organisations are involved in the fight against organised crime work;

  • Encouraging police to tackle drugs crime at a local level, including building community information and intelligence. We are supporting them with 1000 more frontline police officers;

  • Building partnerships with UK Law Enforcement organisations such as the National Crime Agency and HM Revenue and Customs, to maximise opportunities to influence work at UK and international levels;

  • Supporting Police Scotland to foster closer and direct co-operation with European organisations such as Europol to enhance the flow of intelligence to and from Scotland;

  • Setting up the Scottish Crime Campus, which has enabled closer partnership working, improved information sharing and increased joint resourcing;

  • new offences to make it easier to convict organised criminals, including:

    • Involvement in Serious Organised Crime;

    • Directing Serious Organised Crime;

    • Failure to report Serious Organised Crime; and

    • Offences aggravated by connection with Serious Organised Crime.

  • Providing resources to law enforcement agencies to increase their capacity in intelligence analysis, forensic accounting and e-crime; and

  • Preventing companies with links to organised crime from bidding for public sector contracts by tightening up procurement processes.