1. United States$625.63 Billion


    Black Market Crime in the United States


Data and information about security threats from the United States black market. Intelligence and security data collected from government agencies, news articles and other public information sources.

According to a report by the United Nations, an estimated $6.6 Million was made in 2010 by human smugglers bringing in illegal migrants to the United States.

The revenue was generated by migrants paying anywhere between $150 to $100,000. The fees charged by the smugglers was dependent on the immigrants country of origin. Charges covered everything needed for the journey, such as hotel stays, bribes and taxes paid to the drug cartels.

The United States Border Control apprehended 57,000 unaccompanied minors trying to illegaly enter the United States between October 2013 and June 2014.

(More human smuggling statistics.)

Source: Associated Press, “Migration Spotlights Mexican ‘Coyote’ Smugglers,” ABC News, July 21, 2014

Security and intelligence officials in Russia estimate that over $700 Million worth of crab is illegally fished and poached from its waters each year. Most of the boats that poach crab from Russian waters are registered in Cambodia or Sierra Leone with its crew being from Russia. Most of the illegally caught crab is transported to Japan and South Korea.

Fishermen in Alaska also report losing sales due to illegal fishing of crab. The trade group in the state reports that at least $560 Million was lost over the past decade due to illegal crab poachers undercutting their prices.

Source: Stephanie May Joyce, “Searching for the Russian Crab Mafia,” Bloomberg Businessweek, June 19, 2014.

A man from Myanmar told a reporter from the Associated Press that he was sold by a human trafficking broker to a Thailand fishing boat for $616. The man originally thought that he was going to work on the boat for 6 months, yet ended up working for over a year. During the time, the Burmese man stated that he slept for 3 hours a night.

The seafood industry in Thailand employees 2 million people and is constantly facing a labor shortage. Many Thais do not want to work on the fishing boats where the wages are low, the job is dangerous, and many boats are at sea for months and even years. To meet this shortage, an estimated 200,000 migrants from Cambodia and Myanmar are working on the boats. A 2013 survey of 600 workers conducted by the United Nations found that almost none had signed a labor contract and about 40 percent had their wages cut without explanation.

Nearly 6 out of 10 migrant workers on Thai fishing  boats reported seeing a co-worker killed by the captain, according to a 2009 UN report. The man who was sold by traffickers told the AP that after a sick man died on the boat the captain simply tossed the body overboard.

The fishing industry in Thailand exported nearly $7 Billion worth of seafood in 2013. Most of the seafood was exported to Japan and the United States.

Source:  Associated Press, “Thailand’s Rampant Trafficking May Carry Price,” ABC News, June 13, 2014.

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A reporter with the New York Daily News was bought a fake New York ID card in 90 minuets in Roosevelt Avenue in the NYC borough of Queens.

The reporter paid $10 for her picture to be taken, and the $150 to receive the fake id card.

(Prices of fake online degrees.)

Police and other security experts in the city  state that the area of Roosevelt Ave. in Queens is considered to be a hotspot for counterfeit ids, fake green cards and fake passports. According to data released by the Queens District Attorney’s office, there were 273 arrests for creating of possessing fake id documents such as green cards, Social Security cards and fake passports. In 2013, there were 250 arrests. In the first 5 months of 2014, police arrests 130 people for fake documents.

(See more prices of fake ids for sale.)

Source:  Corinne Lestch, “Daily News reporter easily snags fake ID in Queens hotspot for phony documents,” New York Daily News, May 31, 2014.

Security agencies in China confiscated 976,500 metric tons of illegal waste materials that was in the process of being smuggled, according to the Customs Department. The amount of waste material seized in 2013 was 150 percent higher than in 2012.

The illegal waste was intercepted over the course of 221 cases, a threefold increase from the number of cases in 2012.

The solid waste materials that were caught included both recyclable and non-recyclable materials, such as discarded steel and iron, coal slag, chemicals and electronic waste, building materials and medical waste.

Security officials stated that most of the waste was being imported into China from foreign countries such as the United States, Europe and Japan. The waste is smuggled into China through large shipping containers, which are not properly declared on customs forms.

Source:  Zhang Yan, “Solid waste smuggling sees threefold rise,” China Daily, May 27, 2014.

According to security officials with the Nevada State Gaming Control Board, around 500 people are arrested each year for attempting to cheat at casinos in the state of Nevada. Out of the total number of arrested, nearly a third of those arrests are casino employees.

Security experts stated that increased video technology and ultraviolet and infrared light are creating new opportunities for cheaters in the casinos. There have been cases where gamblers would wear infrared contact lenses in order for the wearer to see marked cards.

(More on illegal gambling here.)

Source:  Bethany Barnes, “Casino gaming cheats are increasingly sophisticated, panelists say,” Las Vegas Sun, May 22, 2014.

A sworn affidavit by a special agent with Homeland Security stated that gangs in Boston, Massachusetts are turning away from drug dealing and are increasing its activities in the human trafficking and prostitution markets due to its profitability.

Several experts interviewed by the Boston Herald stated that prostitution is currently the number one way for gangs to make money, surpassing drug trafficking and drug sales.

According to Homeland Security, gangs in the Boston area force girls to service clients as prostitutes and impose daily quotas of $200 to $1,000. These women who are forced to work as prostitutes are able to continually make money for the traffickers, as opposed to a one time sale for drugs.

(Latest human trafficking statistics.)

The rise in human trafficking and prostitution activities has increased in Massachusetts are the enforcement of prostitution offenses has declined. Back in 1995, there were 2,835 arrests across Massachusetts for prostitution related crimes. In 2012, the number of arrests had fallen to 944.

(See all prostitution statistics here.)

Source:  Bob McGovern, “Feds: Flesh funding gangs,” Boston Herald, May24, 2014.

According to statistics released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). security agencies worldwide seized 36 tons of methamphetamine. Back in 2012, a total of 12 tons of meth was seized around the world.

(Cost of meth per gram.)

In 2012, nearly 45 percent of the worldwide total of meth seizures took place in China. In North America, Mexico account for around 60 percent of all seizures in the region in 2012.

Between 2007 and 2012, the seizure rate of ecstasy in the United States declined by 85 percent.

(See all meth statistics.)

Source:  Amar Toor, “New legal highs are flooding the market faster than governments can ban them,” The Verge, May 20, 2014.

In the first five months of 2014, anti-narcotics agents in New York City seized 288 pounds of heroin within the city. The heroin seized was worth about $40 to $60 Million on the black market.

In all of 2013, security agents seized a total of 175 pounds of heroin.

(How much does heroin cost per gram?)

Heroin abuse in NYC has seen a rise in recent years. In the 2014 fiscal year, Drug Enforcement Administration agents based in New York have seized about 35 percent of all heroin intercepted by the DEA. Typically, New York DEA agents are responsible for 20 percent of all heroin seizures.

(See all heroin addiction statistics.)

Source:  Christian Science Monitor, “Heroin Is Cheaper, More Pure, And More Of A Problem Than Ever Before,” Business Insider, May 21, 2014.

Data and statistics from the United States Government estimated that there were 336,000 people in the United States over the age of 55 who were misusing or addicted to prescription pain relievers in 2012. Data from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration showed that the figures for 2012 were 132,000 higher than 10 years previous.

Between 2007 and 2011, the number of seniors who were admitted to substance abuse treatment centers for a prescription pain medicine addiction increased by 46 percent, while the number of patients over the age of 65 who misused a prescription drug and had to be admitted to an emergency room increased by over 50 percent to 94,000 ER admissions during the time period.

Between 1999 and 2010, the overdose death rate of people over 55 increased by 3 times  to 9.4 deaths per 100,000.

Public health officials attribute the problem to an increase in prescription to older Americans for pain relief and anxiety. According to federal statistics,  about one in four adults over the age of 50 in the United States use psychoactive medications, most of which are opioids for pain relief or benzodiazepines for anxiety.

(See all prescription drug abuse statistics here.)

Source:  Peter Eisler, “Older Americans hooked on Rx: ‘I was a zombie’,” USA Today, May 21, 2014.