Vienna, 6 May 2014 - Speaking in advance of the 23 rd Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ), which will meet in Vienna from 12 to 16 May, the Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, said, "If crime were a city, it would never sleep. While the rest of the world is otherwise engaged, the criminals are constantly busy."
"At any given time, criminal networks are involved in trafficking vulnerable people, selling illicit drugs, delivering stolen weapons, exploiting children over the internet, counterfeiting goods, and slaughtering endangered species, as well as dozens of other activities that cause pain, misery, and suffering to millions," added Mr. Fedotov.
"Our response must be equally tireless," he said. "If we are to beat crime, we need to work closely together in every country. This is why the theme of this year's Crime Commission is international cooperation on criminal matters, which emphasises the need for countries to work jointly in areas such as extradition, mutual legal assistance, confiscation of assets and joint investigations."
UNODC estimates that the total turnover from transnational organized crime amounts to a massive US$870 billion annually. Individual crimes also generate huge sums. Human trafficking is estimated to bring in around US$32 billion, trafficking in timber generates revenues of US$3.5 billion a year in South-East Asia, and counterfeiting has a turnover in excess of US$250 billion.
The CCPCJ, also known as the Crime Commission, attracts more than 800 representatives of Member States, non-governmental organizations and the media every year. Fourteen resolutions have been tabled on topics such as smuggling of migrants; killing of journalists, trafficking in cultural property; violence against children; and the rule of law, crime prevention and criminal justice in the post-2015 UN development agenda, among others.
Over 40 high-profile side events will be held on the margins of the Crime Commission on such issues as the prevention of labour trafficking and exploitation of migrant smugglers; the effects of new technology on the abuse and exploitation of children; measuring homicide, corruption and other crimes; and wildlife and forest crime.
The Crime Commission runs for five days and starts on Monday, 12 May, with opening speeches from the Chair of the CCPCJ, Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the UN in Vienna, Mr. Fedotov, and other high-level representatives.
For additional information about the 23rd Session of Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice go to: http://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/commissions/CCPCJ/session/23.html
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