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NCJ Number: 47224 Find in a Library
Title: CRIMINAL BROTHERHOODS
Author(s): D L CHANDLER
Corporate Author: Constable and Company, Ltd
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 55
Sponsoring Agency: Constable and Company, Ltd
London, Wc2h 7eg, England
Sale Source: Constable and Company, Ltd
10 Orange Street
London, Wc2h 7eg,
United Kingdom
Type: Historical Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE ORIGINS AND NATURES OF VARIOUS CRIMINAL BROTHERHOODS ARE TRACED, INCLUDING THE GARDUNA IN SPAIN, THE MAFIA IN SICILY AND AMERICA, THE AMERICAN COSA NOSTRA, AND THE CORSICAN UNIONE CORSE.
Abstract: ORGANIZATIONS WITH THE CHARACTER OF CRIMINAL BROTHERHOODS ARE CONSIDERED TO HAVE BEGUN WITH THE GARDUNA IN 15TH CENTURY SPAIN. SECRETIVE, RITUALISTIC, AND FEUDAL IN STRUCTURE, THE GARDUNA OFFERED CRIMINAL SERVICES FOR HIRE. THE CAMORRA BROTHERHOOD, WHICH WAS THE MOST POWERFUL CRIMINAL SOCIETY OF THE 18TH AND 19TH CENTURIES, ORIGINATED IN NAPLES AS A DIRECT OFFSHOOT OF THE GARDUNA. BOTH ORGANIZATIONS LASTED APPROXIMATELY 400 YEARS. EVERY BROTHERHOOD SOCIETY SINCE THE GARDUNA HAS BEEN BASICALLY FEUDAL IN STRUCTURE, AND THE MAJOR SOCIETIES HAVE ALL BEEN LONG-LIVED. THE SICILIAN MAFIA IS NOW MORE THAN A CENTURY OLD AND, ACCORDING TO A 1972 ITALIAN PARLIAMENTARY INVESTIGATION, IS MORE POWERFUL THAN EVER. THE AMERICAN MAFIA, WHICH EVOLVED INTO COSA NOSTRA, HAS BEEN OPERATING FOR MORE THAN A CENTURY, MAKING IT ONE OF THE OLDEST INSTITUTIONS IN AMERICA, AND ITS EXTINCTION IS CONSIDERED FAR FROM IMMINENT. WHILE THE EXISTENCE OF A CORSICAN BROTHERHOOD CALLED THE UNIONE CORSE HAS BEEN RUMORED FOR YEARS, FRENCH SECURITY AGENCIES DID NOT BEGIN TO ACCEPT ITS EXISTENCE UNTIL THE MID-1960S. INVOLVED PRINCIPALLY IN NARCOTICS, THE UNIONE CORSE IS BELIEVED TO BE THE MOST RAPIDLY GROWING CRIME SYNDICATE IN THE WORLD. IT WORKS DIRECTLY IN THE FRENCH POPULATIONS OF EUROPE, THE MIDDLE EAST, AFRICA, INDOCHINA, AND FRENCH CANADA. IT HAS NOT ESTABLISHED A BASE IN AMERICA DUE TO THE LACK OF COVER OF A SIZEABLE FRENCH-SPEAKING POPULATION. THEIR BUSINESS IN AMERICA IS CONDUCTED WITH THE COSA NOSTRA. IN DISCUSSING THE CRIMINAL BROTHERHOODS, SIGNIFICANT PERSONALITIES AND EVENTS PRECIPITATING CHANGE ARE TREATED. IT IS NOTED THAT CRIMINAL BROTHERHOODS ARE ASSURED SURVIVAL ONLY IN DEMOCRATIC SOCIETIES WHERE LIBERTIES GUARANTEED CITIZENS PROTECT THE BROTHERHOODS FROM UNCONTROLLED TOTALITARIAN POLICE METHODS. IT IS BELIEVED THAT WHILE CRIMINAL SOCIETIES CAN BE HELD UNDER RESTRAINT WITHOUT DISTURBING CIVIL RIGHTS OF THE CITIZENRY, THEY CANNOT BE ELIMINATED. IN THE CONTEXT OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY, IT IS MAINTAINED THAT WHEN LOCAL GOVERNMENTS BECOME TOO BIG, TO IMPERSONAL, OR TOO CORRUPT TO BE RESPONSIVE TO THE NEEDS OF THE CITIZENRY, THE CRIMINAL BROTHERHOOD WILL THRIVE. THE APPENDIX DISCUSSES SOCIETIES WITH SOME ASPECTS OF A CRIMINAL BROTHERHOOD WHICH EXISTED PRIOR TO THE 15TH CENTURY AND MINOR BROTHERHOODS OF THE 19TH CENTURY. PHOTOGRAPHS AND AN INDEX ARE PROVIDED. (RCB)
Index Term(s): Canada; France; Italy; Organized crime; Spain; United States of America
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=47224

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