Many of the jihadist terrorist attacks that have hit Europe in recent years, leaving hundreds dead and many more injured, had some sort of overlap with the criminal world, with the perpetrators purchasing weapons from the black market or using criminal means to finance their activities.
Moreover, a significant number of the attackers have had criminal pasts themselves, allowing them to develop ‘skills’ that are applicable to jihadist terrorism.
This project hopes to develop a better understanding of the crime-terror nexus by:
- Cataloguing and coding the criminal backgrounds of European jihadists to evaluate how involvement in criminal activity affects the process of radicalisation;
- Analysing how criminal techniques have been utilised to finance jihadist activities;
- Researching the role of prisons as places of radicalisation and ‘networking’ between criminals and extremists.
This project also explores the relationship between drugs and terrorism, focusing on Europe since 2012. The results are to be published in conjunction with Europol and the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Awareness (EMCDDA), in their flagship Europe Drug Market Report 2019.
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