Youth Gangs and Transnational Organized Crime in Europe

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Sunday, May 1, 2011
Luz E. Nagle
Only recently has Europe recognized the presence of youth or street gangs of external origin on European soil. The study of gang expansion into Europe has been somewhat slow to develop, in part due to uncertainty, perceptions, and misconceptions among European authorities as to what constitutes a “gang.” This condition is known among criminologists as the “Eurogang paradox,” and is based on the notion that because certain groups do not fit the prevalent or conventional model of a gang (based on a combination of sociological, cultural, statistical, and historical factors), then those groups must not be a gang. Yet, gangs have existed in Europe since at least the 18th century, and contemporary European gangs share many of the same characteristics as their counterparts in United States who are infiltrating Europe...(more)...