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The socio-legal construction of organised crime in Romania

Neag, Alexandra (2022) The socio-legal construction of organised crime in Romania. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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This thesis looks at the process and consequences of criminal justice policy transference with regards to organised crime (OC). Bridging the gap between the post-soviet literature on OC and corruption, and Western conceptualisations of OC and related criminal justice policies, this project looks at how organised crime has been constructed in post-communist Romania. Drawing on document analysis and elite interviews with law-enforcement officers and prosecutors, the present thesis analyses the socio-legal construction of OC in post-communist Romania and considers the extent and consequences of OC policy transference after 1989. It concludes that, while policy transfer did change the legal construction of OC in Romania, it created some significant problems in practice. These include overlaps and confusion in legislation, the creation of an artificial hierarchy of seriousness of OC, underpinned by stereotypical and inaccurate conceptualisations of OC, and the prioritisation of Western crime problems over local and national ones. This highlights and deepens the tension between the law in the books and the law in action. Importantly, the thesis shows that crimes like illegal logging which do not fit the Western stereotype of OC are largely neglected, while the crimes that do fit the stereotype are tackled forcefully, despite their reduced significance in Romania. The broader contribution is to the discussion of criminal justice uniformization in the EU and at the global level, suggesting that the cultural, economic and political differences between nations may mean that policy transfer will never be perfect.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: organised crime; Romania; policy transfer
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
Depositing User: Alexandra Neag
Date Deposited: 27 Jun 2022 16:45
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2022 16:45

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