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Journal cover: Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management

ISSN: 1363-951X
Previously published as: Police Studies: Intnl Review of Police Development
Incorporates: American Journal of Police

Online from: 1997

Subject Area: Industry and Public Sector Management

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A New Zealand approach to prioritising criminal groups

Document Information:
Title:A New Zealand approach to prioritising criminal groups
Author(s):Zhivan Alach, (New Zealand Police, Auckland, New Zealand)
Citation:Zhivan Alach, (2012) "A New Zealand approach to prioritising criminal groups", Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, Vol. 35 Iss: 3, pp.491 - 504
Keywords:Crime, Crime research, Criminals, Networks, New Zealand, Organized crime, Prioritization, Risk assessment, Strategy, Threat assessment
Article type:Technical paper
DOI:10.1108/13639511211250767 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Acknowledgements:The author would like to thank Charl Crous for his assistance in developing the initial AMCOS Prioritisation Model and providing advice on the development of CGRAM. A full copy of CGRAM is available by e-mailing the author.

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to develop a better method for prioritising organised criminal groups, utilising the existing literature on organised crime and risk assessment.

Design/methodology/approach – The study began with an existing prioritisation model, and then involved a review of relevant literature in the fields of organised crime and risk assessment tools. It was then followed by iterative development of a new tool, the Criminal Group Risk Assessment Model (CGRAM), including semi-structured discussions with subject matter experts to ensure the validity of the tool.

Findings – There is little agreement on key concepts and definitions of organised crime, and perhaps because of this, a large number of prioritisation tools with widely differing methodologies and guiding philosophies. A better tool can be developed through a closer examination of the academic literature and careful consideration of all relevant factors, including control measures and ease of use.

Research limitations/implications – Research was limited by the unavailability of source material on other risk assessment tools, and in particular any documents explaining the conceptual underpinnings of those tools.

Practical implications – CGRAM provides an easy-to-use tool for the prioritisation of organised criminal groups and could be of substantial use to law enforcement agencies worldwide due to its universal approach.

Originality/value – While there are many prioritisation tools around, most of them are constrained by a limited conception of organised crime and a seeming lack of attention to the academic literature. CGRAM, while simple and easy to use, is founded on a sound research base and could provide a universal aid to law enforcement agencies.

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