Criminal justice agencies in Israel are reporting a rise in advanced explosive attacks being carried out by organized crime groups. The groups are conducting assassinations and attacks with the use of explosives and other materials stolen from security forces.
All men in Israel must serve in the military. Thus, organized crime members are well versed in handling explosives. Due to their expertise, many of the hits placed by the syndicates are well made and leave no fingerprints. The bomb makers are able to create targeted explosions and precise detonators that are able to kill their target.
The materials for the bombs are collected from various sources. Some are stolen from military depots, while other are home made. According to reports, there are many grenades for sale on the black market in Israel for $287 (1,000 Israeli Shekels).
(More prices of guns and weapons on the black market.)
In addition to the explosive skills, many crime groups also use their training in surveillance and intelligence collection. A raid on a safe house by police in February 2014 found that the criminals were tracking rivals through the use of advanced cellphone tracking software. The rivals location was being displayed on high-resolution monitors, with additional screens dedicated to street level surveillance conducted by gang members.
In 2013, police forces arrested about 500 members of major Israeli organized crime groups.
Source: Jeff Moskowitz, “Israel’s Nightmare: Mobsters Trained by Country’s Own Military,” NBC News, April 24, 2014.
The Government of Israel estimates that over 10,000 immigrants illegally entered the country in 2012. Criminal justice officials believe that most of the immigrants were from African countries such as Eritrea and Sudan.
Many of the immigrants hire the use of human smugglers to guide them across the Sinai peninsula, yet do not complete the journey. During the course of several years, over 500 remains of African migrants have been found the in the desert abandoned.
Source: Adrian Kriesch, “Egypt’s chaos fuels Africa’s human trafficking,” Deutsche Welle, August 27, 2013.
During the first six months of 2013, immigration officials in Costa Rica identified 20 cases of human trafficking within the country.
9 victims were trafficked for sexual exploitations, and 7 were victims of organ trafficking.
People who sold their organs in Costa Rica received $20,000 for their organs and were transported to Israel for the operation.
Source: “Costa Rica Reported 20 Human Trafficking Victims this Year,” Costa Rica News, July 21, 2013.
Police in Romania broke up a human-egg trafficking ring in February 2013. The traffickers would pay Romanian women between $800 to $1,100 (€600 to €800 Euros) for their eggs, and then sell it to couples in Israel for $5,339 (€4,000).
Source: AFP, “Romania busts Israeli human egg-trafficking ring,” Google News, February 19, 2013.
At the start of 2013, there were an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 prostitutes working in Israel. The prostitution industry in the country is estimated to generate over $500 million.
Previously, the sex trade in Israel was estimated to be worth $2 Billion a year, with up to 3,000 women being trafficked in to the country. Israel passed an antitrafficking law in 2006 that caused the number of women being trafficked into the country to decline.
(Prostitute prices around the world.)
In 2013, most of the women in the sex trade are Israelis.
Source: Isabel Kershner, “Prostitutes in Israel Are Finding New Lives in Training for the Fashion World,” New York Times, January 3, 2013.
A study by economists at the Open University stated that $2.8 Billion (11 Billion Shekel) is spent on illegal sports betting on the black market in Israel.
If the sports betting market was legalized in Israel, the study estimates that the government would be able to collect up to $$315 Million (1.2 Billion Shekel) in tax revenue.
The total illegal gambling market in Israel is estimated to be worth $4.1 Billion.
(More stats about online sports betting.)
Source: Moti Bassok, “Study: Legalized gambling in Israel would net NIS 1.2 billion in tax revenue,” Haaretz, December 10, 2012.
There are over 10,000 medical marijuana users in Israel, according to a press report by NPR.
In 2005, there were only a few hundred licensed medical marijuana users in the country.
The black market price of marijuana in Israel is reported to be $1.5 per gram.
Source: Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, “Medical Marijuana Use Sprouting In Israel,” NPR, July 4, 2012.
A study by the London Metropolitan University found that transnational organized crime groups are responsible for 80 percent of all crime committed online.
In addition, the President of INTERPOL stated that Europe loses up to $977 Billion (750 Billion Euros) a year to cybercrime, and that the country of Israel deals with over 1,000 cyber attacks every minute.
Source: Associated Press, “Global police network Interpol to make war on cyber criminals a priority,” Washington Post, May 8, 2012.
Over 15,000 people are estimated to be working in the prostitution industry in Israel. Out of the total number of prostitutes, one-third, or 5,000 people, are believed to be minors.
Source: Ruth Eglash, “Protests to call for criminalization of prostitution,” Jerusalem Post, February 3, 2012.
An NGO reported in 2011 that it has identified around 620 teenagers who are working as prostitutes in Israel. The organization, Elem, previously reported finding 126 teenage prostitutes in 2010 and said that the higher number was due to stepped up efforts.
75 percent of the minors were girls, 20 percent were boys, and the remaining 5 percent were transgender. The youngest prostitutes that were identified were 12.
Source: Dana Weiler-Polak, “NGO says teenage prostitution worsening in Israel,” Haaretz, November 28, 2011.