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Organized crime in Marseille

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9 pages
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  1. Introduction
  2. The neo-institutionalist approach
  3. The origins of the Marseilles 'milieu'
  4. The Marseilles criminal groups: Operating in an attractive region
  5. Support for the 'milieu' within legitimate sectors of the society
  6. Organised crime's relationship with politics
  7. The neo-institutionalist theory
    1. Remarks on the Marseilles groups' power struggles
    2. Tracing back the origins to the beginning of the last century
  8. Conclusion: The lack of a clear definition for organized crime according to French Law
  9. Bibliography

Academic literature on French organised crime is scarce. Very few ? if not any ? criminology departments exist within French universities and higher education institutions. Moreover, public debate is centred on the issues of petty crime and unruly youths, as it was the case during the 2002 presidential election campaign. Organised crime is also presented as a foreign-originated problem , be it from Russian, Chinese, Italian or Columbian origin. However, there exists some evidence to maintain that native organised groups are present in France, especially in its South-Eastern part. For instance, the Mediterranean city of Marseilles has a tradition of organised groups that can be traced back to the 19th century. Since the end of the Second World War, these groups have fought a bloody war for the control of the Marseilles underworld.

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