Archive for April 17th, 2014

Ukraine & EU: Corruption/Mafia Crises Harm Nations’ Economies

posted by Ida B. Wells IV @ 9:00 AM
April 17, 2014

Mafie-Europe        One of the reasons most Ukraine citizens wanted to move closer to the European Union and move away from Russia is because people in other post-Soviet nations are doing much better economically than they are.

But now it is more obvious that their nation is hamstrung by ties to Russia’s mafia; also that Mafia gangs affect the European Union. Germany is infiltrated by Italy’s mafia, which has profound affect on the slow growth of the EU’s economy.

Jorg Diehl reveals in ‘“I Will Tear His Head Off”: How the Italian Mafia Is Infiltrating Germany’:  “A trial . . . in Cologne showcases the extent of the Italian Mob’s infiltration of German society and the construction business.” That trial gives police insight into two Mafia groups in Western Germany.

Investigators say Gabriel S., who threatened someone’s head, “ran a network of shell companies and helped cheat the state and the social security benefits office of many millions of euros.”  Michael Day adds:  “Ndrangheta mafia family makes more money than McDonald’s and Deutsche Bank combined,” a report claims.

Diehl writes further:  “The dimensions of this form of sham business––using so-called proforma invoices––are considerable. According to investigators’ estimates, this activity costs the state around €1.5 billion ($1.2 billion) in lost taxes and approximately €2 billion in unpaid social security contributions. The labor union Ver.di pegs the annual damages at approximately €10 billion.”

“German prosecutors generally don’t seem to be well positioned for the fight against the Mafia. . .the Federal Criminal Police Office criticized the German state for rarely sniffing out the Mafiosos’ ill-begotten earnings.”  This might explain “why the Italian criminals feel so comfortable in Germany. According to [police] overview, at least 460 suspected members of the Mafia live in Germany.”

In her exhaustive study of Ukraine’s economy, ‘Organized Crime and Corruption in Ukraine: Impediments to the Development of a Free Market Economy,’ Louise I. Shelley of American University avers:

“Organized crime and endemic corruption threaten the stability of Ukraine and undermine its transition to a money-launderingmarket economy. The indigenous crime problem of Ukraine is significant, but the problems are exacerbated by the criminalization of the Russian state and most of the successor states of the former USSR. . . . the proximity of Ukraine to both Western Europe and the Caucasus makes those countries important transit points for diverse criminal activity.”

Jamie Dettmer argues “Organized crime helped Putin grab Crimea, and may open the way for him to take more of Russian-speaking Ukraine.”  He quotes a prosecutor:  “ . . . local hoodlums are operating among the pro-Russian protests in the restive eastern Ukraine, helping to direct them on the instructions of Kremlin-linked organized crime groups. . . . specifically at the Seilem mob, which has been closely tied over the years to ousted Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych.”

Rising from criminal gangs to political leadership led to World War II. Hitler and Mussolini led thug gangs until criminality put them into national prominence.  Christian messages emphasize only prayer can combat evil: “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty (1 Timothy 2: 1-2).”

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