Countering illicit trafficking and Organised Crime

The Challenge

Uneven economic development and high levels of social inequality act as drivers of organised crime in the region.  The geographical proximity of a small number of countries showing a medium Human Development Index to a majority of those categorized as low, presents a breeding ground for all forms of organised crime its criminal and social implications. Comparatively high levels of income inequality, unemployment and the emergence of informal settlements with limited social control also provide incentives for engagement in criminal activities.

Illicit trafficking is an integral part of the organised crime chain, facilitating the spread of illicit contraband and generating profits for those involved. Border crossing points are often inadequately equipped for interdicting contraband, lacking modern detection equipment, specialised training, and forensic and scientific capacities. Illicit trade includes illicit drugs and precursor chemicals, small arms and light weapons, wildlife and natural resources, tobacco products and fraudulent medicines, as well as trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants.

Our Work

UNODC is supporting SADC Member States to effectively address organised crime and illicit trafficking.  It is doing so by strengthening regional border control and management capacities and supporting counter-narcotics efforts regarding precursor chemicals.  It is also assisting countries to address urban and emerging crimes, and increase anti-money laundering and forensic responses in the region.

The following table highlights specific outcomes under this Pillar: