Organized Crime in the Waste Management Industry

Serena Favarin, Kimberley L. Thachuk

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroChapter


Waste management is a lucrative business for organized crime. This chapter examines how this industry is penetrated and manipulated by organized crime and the corresponding responses by both governments and sector businesses to combat the persistent criminal presence. The case of Italy and the infiltration by mafia-type organizations of the waste management sector is examined to demonstrate the scale of these activities. The criminal infiltration of the waste management industry saw its inception with organized crime operating waste cartage operations that served as fronts for criminal enterprises as well as for laundering the proceeds of such crimes as extortion, fraud, loan sharking, and drug trafficking. Over time, the sector itself came to be used to generate criminal profits. As such, organized crime began competing with private waste management companies. Currently, it wins bids thanks to corruption, engaging in contract rigging with public sector entities. In these and similar transactions, corrupt officials frequently act as middlemen. Waste is then dumped in waterways, fields, caves, and mines or is illegally disposed of in developing countries thereby realizing still more profits as none of the required disposal costs are paid. Private industries such as factories and tanneries also collude with organized crime as the latter disposes of their waste at a lower cost. When these cases become public, many industries are forced to alter their calculus: sometimes the loss of a good public reputation may prove to be prohibitively expensive. One result has been for the waste industry to form organizations that combat sector penetration by organized crime. Moreover, numerous private-public partnerships have been concluded to counter the criminal misuse of the waste sector.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteThe Private Sector and Organized Crime. Criminal Entrepreneurship, Illicit Profits, and Private Sector Security Governance
Numero di pagine14
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2022


  • organized crime
  • waste crimes
  • waste management


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