!" Those crazy summer days are nearly over and another new scholastic awaits us back at the University of Malta! Ghaqda Studenti taKriminologija (Gh.S.K.), after a hectic scorching summer preparing for what lies ahead, is now ready full to face all the upcoming challenges, to be there for the welfare of all its students and to create even more awareness on criminology issues that surround us! It is possible that for several readers this is the first time that they hear of Gh.S.K. Hence, let me feed your curiosity and quickly brief you on the past work carried out. Last year, not only did this organisation get back on its feet aftar a lengthy period of inactivity, but Gh.S.K. also became one of the most active organisations on campus. Our program of events commenced with a live entertainment "Guess who’s back" social party featuring an art exhibition on the theme of crime featuring artistic exhibits created by our students. During the festive season, inspired by Sedqa’s educational campaign “Take whichever path in life but not the white line”; a round table debate on the fight against drugs was organised, in which Mr. Jesmond Xuereb "ic-china" shared his past experiences with drug abuse and together with Mr. Grima from Sedqa and Mr. Calafato (an ex-probation officer as well as lecturer at the Institute of Criminology) they dialogated with the students present and gave their valuable insight on the present drug abuse situation in Malta.
In March, in collaboration with the Young Entrepreneurs and Leaders (YEL), Gh.S.K. hosted a seminar dealing with “The Psychology of Crime”. Probation officer Ms. Chantal Avellino and psychologist Ms. Roberta Holland discussed in detail the topics related to the ‘Psychology in the Courtroom'and 'Mental Disorder and Crime'. The peak of last year’s performance for Gh.S.K. was eventually reached during the Malta Criminology Association conference addressing “Criminality in Island States”, on April 23rd. During this conference Gh.S.K. presented, with great satisfaction, the first study carried out by the organistation entitled, “Crime on Campus: A myth or a reality?”. The aim was to study in detail the issue of crime on campus at the University of Malta, especially considering that such a study was never carried out in the University’s history. With a community of around 10,000 students, G .S.K. felt that the time had come to study the realities that students were facing whilst on campus, away from the lecture halls. Results showed that 69% of the respondents believed that crime on university campus is a reality while 12.8 % of the respondents stated that they had been victims of crime on campus. The most criminal activities percieved to be present on campus were those related to theft especially theft from cars, followed by vandalism. Other offences included plagiarism, drug-use and sexual harassment. The study also included indepth interviews with a Superintendent, a University Security Guard, KSU and an ex-university student who related her nightmares of sexual harassment during her study days at Univeristy. A full review of the study can be downloaded from the Gh.S.K. website - www.ghsk.org. The great news is that last year was just the beginning! So, what’ s next? For this year Gh.S.K. has reserved a yearly program of events which will be more effective, more energetic and more informative. During freshers’ week Gh.S.K. and KSU will be accepting applications for the "Drug Abuse in Society" public lectures recognised by Degree Plus. This will not be just another campaign against drugs. For the first time ever, under one study unit, all the aspects of drugs will be studied. The
Seminar on Drug Abuse
Psychology of Crime Seminar (with YEL)
Crime on campus study, accessible from www.ghsk.org
MACA conference group photo
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"If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers, it shows he is a citizen of the world, and that his heart is no island cut off from other lands, but a continent that joins to them". Sir Frances Bacon (1561-1626). Findings by Espanshade, Calhoun and Muller reveal that immigrant individuals are often portrayed as criminals, poor, violent and uneducated. Immigrants are also repeatedly associated with the declining economy, overpopulation, pollution, increase in violence as well as depleted social resources. Peoples’ attitudes are affected by these perceptions which end up conditioning them. According to Arrango, in 1995 immigrants were blamed for acts ranging from stealing jobs to criminality, eating strange kinds of food as well as swamping the streets with alien languages. Above all, they are seen as a threat to the integrity of the dominant host nation. Although in some cases nationality does not seem to be a decisive factor in gaining access to basic services. Non citizens’ rights do not differ significantly from those of citizens. Also cultural or racial similarity to the host country did not protect individuals of various groups from experiencing perceived discrimination. Nevertheless public opinion surveys have shown that many EU citizens hold biased and stereotypical views about immigrants and refugees, especially those from Non-Western Countries, particularly Sub-Saharan African countries. Malta is no exception to the rule. Images of overloaded boats, detention camps and tent villages readily lend themselves to notions of crisis and emergency thereby heightening public fear, which to some extent is heightened by negative press. Unfortunately, most of these immigrants
are from Sub-Saharan African countries; attempting to secure shelter and refuge in Europe, risking life and limb as a result of political unrest, war, famine, extortion, slavery, oppression, genocide and ethnic cleansing in their native countries. The question is do these exclusionist stance, extreme acts of violence, aggression and brutality towards immigrant groups a hide innate fear of foreigners? Do the problem of migration and arrival of immigrants in a host nation cause harm? Has immigration made the citizens fearful of sleeping in their yards and balconies in the summer as they were used to? Does the situation warrant people of the host nation to install alarms in their houses and sleep with a gun under the pillow? Why the Afro pessimism? Stereotype, distressing and persistent negative impression of immigrants, refugees, asylum-seekers through false, inaccurate and distorted information are common place in our society today. Presenting immigrants as a menace and threat to the wellbeing and security of host populations will not help in the so called quest for integration, assimilation and friendship. So spare a moment for some soul searching and sober reflection. These demonstrations of hate, exclusion, racism, dehumanisation and demonization of particular people, who have done nothing wrong other than seek shelter in our homes, in our land. All the brouhaha, would it be different if they were of another race? Were is the Mediterranean hospitality? You be the judge!!
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aspects will be as follows: legal, police drug investigation, psychological, sociological, pharmacuetical, forensic-medical and statistical; with every aspect presented and discussed by a different expert in the particular field. Amidst the great vibe of freshers’ s week on the 5th October (12:30-13:30) GHSK & SHS with the support of Sedqa will be presenting the true life experience of an ex-alcoholic who will be sharing the risks, consequences and effects of his past alcohol addiction and how he managed to overcome this problem. This will be followed by an energetic on the role of binge drinking in today’ s youth leisure lifestyle. You want to know more? Then join us on our facebook group not only for more updates but also to follow news on the criminogenic world both from a local and a global aspect that are presented on our facebook page on a daily basis! Still interested? Then come and visit us on our stand (infront of the library, up the stairs of quadrangle) or send us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website www.ghsk.org to become a member! In the meantime take care of yourselves and by the way... Welcome to the family of criminology students! From, Abigail Cremona (B.A. Criminology, 3nd Year FT) President (Criminology Students’ Society – University of Malta)
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Cases of child abuse worldwide a. In Afghanistan women are not allowed to dance in public, but boys can be made to dance in women' s clothing - and they are often sexually abused. Apparently this is an ancient tradition. People call it bachabaze which literally means "playing with boys". The most disturbing thing is that after these parties, the boys are taken to hotels and sexually abused. The men behind the practice are often wealthy and powerful. As a display of their rich status, some of them keep several bachas (boys) with them. The boys, who can be as young as 12, are usually orphans or from very poor families. b. Even worse, in Nigeria children are first abused and then killed accused of being witches. Community workers say kids are cast out of their villages, attacked and even killed. Rescued children bear the scars of being beaten, attacked with boiling water and machete cuts. c. If you happened to be an albino child in Tanzania chances are you won’ t live to see your pubescent years. It is becoming a widespread trend that people kill child albinos and chop their body parts, believing they can get rich when mining or fishing!
Studies constantly show that a link exists between child maltreatment and crime. Child maltreatment is a major social problem leaving many children victimized from all over the world. Moreover, the extensive research carried out by various organisational bodies all seems to indicate that child abuse might cause harmful long term consequences. But what constitutes child maltreatment? Child maltreatment consists of physical abuse, emotional or psychological abuse, sexual abuse and child neglect. Though all of these can cause future delinquent behavior, studies point at physical abuse and neglect as the two main perpetrators that are more likely to cause problems with the law enforcement during adulthood. In additional, poverty is listed as one of the most important factors that lead to child maltreatment. In this scenario, the role that the family plays is crucial because children who are brought up in a “ distressed” or “ disturbed” family environment are more likely to end up in delinquent circles at later stages of their life. The victims of child abuse go through low levels of concentration due to the ongoing trauma, which is usually followed by a bad performance in school. Having such low self-esteem, such children are more prone to become “ second generation bullies” , suffering in silence. In order to rebel against the authorities, the victims start to lose their social bond with society and its institutions. At this point norms and regulations are no longer significant; conformity is tossed aside, and the rule of the jungle takes over. Victims of
child abuse adopt a sentiment of failure, which through constant insisting, becomes ingrained in their nature thus causing a self-fulfilling prophecy. In an attempt to prove their worth and avenge their pain, there is a huge risk that most victims end up as criminals. Researchers have also noticed that in several cases, victims keep experiencing their past abuse during their adulthood through the form of flashbacks. Having lost all the trust in the people that surround them, forming intimate relationships gets very difficult; and if they do settle in a relationship chances are that they find themselves back into similar cycles of abuse or neglect that they went through when they were young. Having said that, although the primary belief is that victims of child maltreatment end up as criminals, this does not hold true for all cases. On the contrary, there are victims of child maltreatment who manage to become the opposite of their parents. The moral of the story is a simple one: Strong family bonds and family relationships are fundamental in order to provide a safe, nurturing environment for children. The best service that can be given to a child is a service that is close to the child; thus, children who are victims of neglect, abuse, or abandonment must not also end up as victims of bureaucracy. They deserve our devoted attention, not our divided attention. One last note goes to those out there who have gone through this nightmare: Abuse changes your life... Fight Back and change your life again by Breaking Your Silence on Abuse!
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" Close your eyes and reminiscent about the past, particularly the period of your childhood. Do you remember those good old days when your grandparents showered you with love, affection and plenty of rich, delicious food? Do you remember the security, reassurance and warmth that their smile used to instil in you? Now open your eyes back to the cold reality. Do you know that according to the World Health Organisation, Elder abuse is a problem that exists in both developing and developed countries and that it ranges from 1-10%? Although the extent of elder mistreatment is unknown, its social and moral influences are obvious. As such, it demands a global multifaceted response, one which focuses on protecting the rights of older persons. In many parts of the world elder abuse occurs, yet there is little recognition or response. Until recently, this serious social problem was hidden from the public and considered as a private matter. Even today, elder abuse continues to be a taboo; underestimated and ignored by societies across the world. Nevertheless, the accumulating evidence is continually indicating that elder abuse is an important public health concern as well as a serious societal problem. Elder abuse can take various forms such as physical, psychological or emotional, sexual and financial abuse. It can also be the result of intentional or unintentional neglect. Who is at risk of abuse? Both men and women are risk of being abused; however, women are more likely to be abused at home whilst the probabilities are that men get abused outside the home. According to AEA helpline in UK and Canada female victims amount to 67% and 70% respectively, moreover it has been reported that 78% of the victims are over the age of 70. Having said that, it is also important to keep in mind that the statistics do not reflect the real situation since most of the abuse is never reported. Studies on elder abuse often note that older victims feel embarrassed and ashamed to report the crimes they suffered. More often than not, they do not have the courage to speak up, either because they are fearful of sounding their voices and are isolated without anybody to confide in, or because they are simply not aware that what they are experiencing is actually abuse. Amidst all of this, in Malta the department for the elderly is appealing to the public at large to fulfil its obligation of reporting suspicious cases of abuse to the police or social services agencies. Nonetheless, discrimination against the elderly in society in still present and it can be felt in the: •
Employment: where the elderly are forced to take early retirement where age barriers make it difficult for promotions and further training in the private and public sector.
Involvement in society: as elderly people are still facing restrictions from the public transport, leaving its effect on the quality of life of the elder. Moreover, in many cases the elderly do not have a voice on issues concerning their neighbourhood and community.
Legislations and regulations: which are not covering all the needs of elders in order to make them feel totally safe and protected from violence, burglary, mugging and also financial defrauding.
Lack of educational opportunities: in which the elderly are given the possibility to learn to use new technologies like computers, mobile phones and the Internet. These are essential in our the modern way of life, thus that their lack of knowledge could be a barrier to participate in today’ s world.
In 2006 the International Network for Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA) designated June 15th as World Elderly Abuse Awareness Day to raise awareness and to highlight solutions that challenge the problem of elder abuse. In Malta the Working Group on Elder Abuse in St. Vincent de Paul Residence has been set up in 2007 to protect, educate and prevent Elderly Abuse in the Governmental Old peoples’ home. In additional, the Social Work Unit of Appogg offers support to elderly patients in hospital, which is extended to the first few weeks on going back home, in order to see that they are well taken care of, either by their own family members or other institutions. Nobody succeeds in understanding how or why a person feels the need to abuse somebody else. Some might think that violence solves all problems, that vengeance is the only way to get back at someone who has done wrong in the past. Those feelings of love have slowly disintegrated either due to lack of time and tiredness or as the by-product of stress. If you ever come across a victim of elder abuse think twice before you close your eyes. Keep in mind that while you’ re reading this article, your same grandparents can be one of those 10% suffering this hidden under-reported threat in misery and silence.
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What comes to mind when you hear the word “ criminal” ? I would venture to say that for most of you, the first image which pops into your minds is that of a tough, hard-bitten gangster, a man with an intense gaze that sends shivers down your spine, a frightening figure whose very shadow would make even the strongest of people writhe. That’ s right, a man. For many, the domineering persona in the world of crime is without a doubt the male figure. Why? It seems to me that more often than not, the alluring facade of a woman betrays her real self. Our perception of women relies too heavily on their appearance, on their overpowering beauty which leads us to underestimate the evil intentions of female criminals. Think of Curley’ s wife in Of Mice and Men... her sensuality may give us the impression that she means no harm, that she is just an innocent passerby. However, she is as much to blame for her own murder as is Lennie, or perhaps even more than him. I say “ even more” because she knows Lennie’ s limitations, she knows when not to cross the line, yet she still crosses it, while acting as the innocent woman with naive motives. Instead of blaming the dangerous femme fatale for the downfall of the man, the audience often ends up blaming the man himself for the crime he commits. Although the man is naturally guilty of allowing the woman to
tempt him to such an extent, the female herself is the primary reason behind the crime, the spring which triggers the man’ s transgressions, yet who hides behind her blameless exterior. In the 2002 film Femme Fatale, starring Antonio Banderas as a photographer who is lured by a femme fatale, played by Rebecca Romijn into helping her disguise her identity, the power of the female character is explored. The film brilliantly portrays the manner in which the doublecrossing woman influences the people, particularly the men, around her, having several aspects reminiscent of the film noir genre. Although the criminal is not overtly the woman, the working force behind the offenses carried out is indeed the female character, the one whose power to manipulate others ultimately makes her the most dangerous. So when you hear the word criminal, stop and think: It might be the man who is convicted of criminal charges, but an even more powerful woman may be the energy behind the events which unfold. Appearances are indeed deceptive, as the endings to so many crime films so often prove, despite the stereotypical gender roles which are still extremely influential in today’ s society. Remember: Behind every man, there is a woman waiting to make her mark!
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Yesterday evening at around half past eleven at night Mr and Mrs Joe Borg, the neighbours of an eighty-nine year old spinster who lived alone with her two dogs in the limits of Siggiewi, informed Executive Police that their sleep had been interrupted by two loud firearm shots and a shrill scream just outside their bedroom window. Mr and Mrs Borg stated that when they finally gathered enough courage to get up and look out of the window, all they managed to see was a white station wagon bearing one burnt-out headlight speeding out of their neighbour’ s driveway and heading straight up the road. Later on that night Ms Satariano’ s body was found dead, strewn across the veranda in a puddle of blood. The Duty Magistrate ordered that an inquest be carried out. She also appointed a photographer and two other experts to help her out in this investigation.* This is far from being the first time that a similar news item has been related in newspapers. For a Duty Magistrate, similar scenarios imply the initiation of a steady process of hard work – a process called the inquiry relating to the in genere, which implies the collection of the general body of evidence relating to a given crime without reference to any accused person. It was clearly upheld that an inquiry relating to the in genere “ …m’ hijiex ekwivalenti ghall-att tal-akkuza…” in the 2002 case in the names of COP Gorg Grech v. Direttur Generali. It is thus upon the receipt of a report by the Executive Police, or any information relayed to the Police by any informer, or even upon the filing of a kwerela by the private or the injured party as the case may be, in regard to any crime exceeding the punishment of three years imprisonment – wherein the subject-matter of the offence de quo is still existent – that a Magistrate shall hold an inquest on the spot, so as to discover and preserve evidence leading towards the truth, which criminal justice strives to achieve. The main aim behind the carrying out of an inquiry relating to the in genere which inter alia includes the inquest on the spot and the drawing up of the procès-verbal along with any reperti, if any at all, is to collect and preserve any form of available evidence leading to law enforcement later on during the criminal process. Moreover, an inquiry relating to the in genere must also be ordered by the Magistrate in the case of a sudden, violent or suspicious death or in cases wherein the cause of death is unknown. In cases wherein a person, who is detained in any place of confinement or who is under Police custody or even if any person residing in Mount Carmel Hospital dies, a Magistrate shall order an inquiry relating to the in genere to be held. This Magisterial role may at times be delegated out by the Duty Magistrate herself to a Police officer not below the rank of Inspector and in other exceptional circumstances even to the Gozo Registrar, so as to establish the relevant facts. However such circumstances are merely the exception and not the rule; thus, one must follow the precise letter of the law in
such instances, which are specifically detailed out at law. The law also lays down specific rules regarding those limited instances when a Magistrate can dispense with the inquiry relating to the in genere altogether. The Magistrate or the officer/delegatee holding the inquest, being at the head of the inquiry relating to the in genere, can appoint and employ the necessary experts to help in the collection and preservation of evidence, who will in turn and in due process draw up a procès-verbal, which will ultimately be signed by the same person conducting the inquest. If such a procès-verbal is regularly drawn up, it shall be received as evidence in trial and all the witnesses, experts and other persons taking part in the inquest need not be produced during the compilation stage before the Court of Magistrates as a Court of Criminal Inquiry. Nonetheless certain judges would still prefer to summon witnesses in court during the compilation and trial stages, since as was stated in a 2005 case in the names of Nazzareno sive Reno Mercieca v. Prime Minister et., despite the fact that the procès-verbal bears approbatory force such evidence is far from dogmatic and can be reexamined at a later stage in the criminal process. Judge Flores would incessantly argue in such a manner. The Magistrate or her appointed delegatee bears extensive powers at this stage in the criminal process. The Magistrate can order the disarticle and internal examination of the body or even its exhumation, provided public health issues are taken into account. According to Article 550A of Chapter nine of the Laws of Malta the inquiry relating to the in genere must be completed within sixty days from the ‘filing’ of the relevant notizia criminis, unless such a period of sixty days has been extended, through a report stating the reason for the delay, as drawn up by the Magistrate and as transmitted to the Attorney General within not more than three working days from the lapse of the abovementioned sixty days. The dual-role of Magistrates, who are seen to bear both an investigative as well as a judicial function by virtue of their very own office, has been emphasised in a 1997 case in the names of Republica v. Jason Callejja. Nevertheless it is worth noting the fact, as upheld in the landmark 1990 Constitutional Court case in the names of L-Onor. Lawrence sive Lorry Sant v. Commissioner of Police; that once an inquiry relating to the in genere is held by one particular Magistrate the compilation cannot be conducted by the same Magistrate in question, since one might very well bring forth the conflict of interest argument.
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Persons subject to sleep disorders such as somnambulism or sleepwalking arise from the sleep stage in a state of low consciousness and act out activities that are usually performed during a state of full consciousness. These activities can be as benign as sitting up in bed, walking to the bathroom, and cleaning, or as hazardous as cooking, driving, extremely violent gestures, grabbing at hallucinated objects, or even criminal acts such as homicide and rape. This condition however could be a viable defence on the basis of automatism. For a person to be found criminally responsible for an act there needs to be the actus reus and the mens rea. The Australian Model Criminal Code Committee delves into this situation where they state that, “ At the minimum there needs to be some operation of the will before a physical movement is described as an act. The physical movements of a person who is asleep, for example, probably should not be regarded as acts at all, and certainly should not be regarded as acts for the purposes of criminal responsibility. These propositions are embodied in the rule that people are not held responsible for involuntary ‘acts’, that is, physical movements which occur without there being any will to perform that act. This situation is usually referred to as automatism.” According to the National Sleep Foundation, sleepwalking is prevalent in 1-15% of the general populace. Sleepwalking is common in children, and usually disappears by adolescence. Sleepwalking in adults is less common, nevertheless when it occurs, the events are three times as much (per year), and longer than, the rate of sleepwalking amongst children. When sleepwalking turns into criminal behaviour the level of responsibility and thus, the severity of punishment, have been highly debated because sleepwalkers are more often than not, oblivious to their activity during an episode. According to Culebras, a Professor of Neurology at the State University of New York College of Medicine, "It is conceivable that the sleepwalker has the potential to drift into a confusional arousal, a state in which violence and assault are likely when prolonged and if given the adequate circumstances” . In the case of Simon Fraser in 1878, the accused was asleep
in bed together with his wife and 18-month-old son. According to his own declaration, he dreamt that a white beast flew through the floor and round the back of the bed where the child was lying. In his dream Fraser caught this beast and hurled it against the floor of the room. When he came back to his senses, he found that it was his son which he had just caught and manhandled. The child died shortly afterwards as a result of his injuries. Fraser never denied that he had caused his son’ s death. However, when faced with the charge of murder he pled “ not guilty” and presented the defence that he was asleep at the time. At his trial, three medical experts testified that he was not insane, but he suffered from an abnormal mental condition. According to his declaration, Fraser had strange dreams every night but was rarely “ violent” . About 18 months prior to the killing of his child he dreamt that his wife was being attacked by a dog which led him to throw pieces of furniture at it and injuring his wife in the process. The trial judge, Lord Justice-Clerk Moncreiff, told the jury that they should agree upon the fact that Fraser was totally unconscious of what he had done to his son. He also suggested “ that the accused killed his child, but that he was in a state in which he was unconscious of the act, which he was committing by reason of the condition of somnambulism, and that he was not responsible” . The jury followed this ruling and Simon Fraser signed an agreement in which he promised to always sleep alone. The outcome in the Fraser case can be contrasted with the attitude of the Court of Appeal in the 1991 English case of R. vs Burgess. There, the accused attacked a woman hitting her over the head with a bottle and a video recorder. He submitted a defence of noninsane automatism, that is, he had been asleep and sleepwalking at the same time. Nonetheless, the trial judge ruled that his defence amounted to insanity, since there was no external cause for his mental dysfunction at the time of the attack. The jury acquitted him on the grounds of insanity, securing his detention in a mental hospital. Recently in 2008, “ decent and devoted” husband Brian Thomas strangled his wife during a nightmare while they were on holiday. He dreamt that an intruder broke into the camper van they were sleeping in, and whilst acting out his dream he killed his wife. Thomas walked a free man from court on the (Continued on page 19)
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/ *+,0%$ %" " #&+#29-3 #*&4 Have you ever noticed a sum of money missing from your bank account which you have not spent and without knowing how, why and who have taken it? “ Card Fraud” is the baby ghost in your pocket. As money – any object generally accepted in exchange for goods and services and repayments of debts – evolved, from the barter system used long time ago, to gold, notes and coins and to today’ s plastic money; consumer spending patterns kept constantly changing.
4. Fraud, a competitive issue? Fraud prevention techniques are normally seen by banks as an asset which needs to be protected from their competitors in the market, forcing them to conceal potential loopholes in transaction security. The ACI recommends that financial institutions need to start sharing information and co-operating on this issue in order to combat fraud effectively and efficiently, keeping the costs of prevention used at a minimum.
In light of present global economic conditions, banks are facing pressure to cut costs in order to increase their return on investment. However, banks should not forget their commitment of introducing anti-fraud strategies in order to secure their clients’ money.
5. Appropriate working practices According to the ECB, in 2009, 40% of all transactions were card payments – an increase of 6.8% from 2008. In 2009, 312 million in ATM related losses were reported, as stated by the European ATM Security Team – a decrease of 36% from 2008.
There are five main challenges which financial institutions are facing in their fight against card fraud, according to the ACI – a leading provider of electronic payments software.
Banks need to look at the structure and effectiveness of their fraud departments. The expertise and competence of their staff must also be incessant. The goal of an anti-fraud strategy should be a real-time detection and prevention system present through all the channels used. These are some tips drawn by the ACI to complement an anti-fraud strategy: Detection and Prevention Identifying fraud while it is happening will prevent the transactions from being authorised. Auto blocking and real-time transaction monitoring complement each other.
1. Accurately defining payment fraud Different definitions of fraud and labelling of reported payments exist, making it difficult to reach a consensus on the level of fraud cases and the subsequent cost. This difference exists between different countries and different industries; hence, statistics must be thoroughly consulted with before drawing conclusions. In order to help solve this problem, a global fraud reporting mechanism should be put in place as recommended by the ACI. 2. Fraud departments works in isolation It is not a standard practice for card fraud teams to work and collaborate with other teams combating other types of fraud via different payment methods, such as internet banking. This isolation makes it difficult to detect new customers’ payment patterns. A case in point is when an account is taken over as a result of phishing. A fraudster will change the account address by going online and then they request a new card for their fraudulent purchases. This case may not be picked by a system which has departments working in isolation; as the change in address may be viewed by one team and the request for a new card may be viewed by another. 3. Fraud is not detected frequently enough by current techniques The fraud monitoring process may not be keeping up with the pace of the fraudster; hence, by the time the fraud is detected, the transactions might have already been carried out.
Identification of POC The Point of Compromise is the physical location, otherwise known as the terminal, at which card skimming (copying illegal card numbers and PINs) has taken place. Cards used for fraud can provide valuable information on spending history as well as the locations of where the compromise occurs; thus, a course of action can be drawn. Other cardholders who are potentially at risk may be identified and protected by the bank, either by blocking or watching the cards at risk. Auto alerting A system of auto dialling or SMS may be used by the bank to inform customers about unusual transactions, like a transaction that goes beyond a certain amount. The cardholder is then responsible to block the card immediately if the transaction carried out is fraudulent. A survey conducted by ACI in 2009 shows that half of the individuals who suffered card fraud considered changing banks, an action which would affect bank loyalty. Card fraud is not only resulting in financial losses but also affecting the reputation and loyalty of customers in financial institutions, especially at this time where banks are under public scrutiny.
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Litter, fly-tipping, graffiti, excess trade waste, fly-posting and additional household waste makes our country look unkempt and dirty. Environmental crime is crime against the environmental law and covers those illegal activities which are harmful to our environment and quality of life. Environmental crime is a topic of growing international concern and major law enforcement agencies take environmental crime very seriously. Most law enforcement agencies divide environmental crime into two categories: pollution, and threats to endangered species. In the case of pollution, environmental crime can take the form of failing to safe toxins correctly, dumping toxic material or incidental leakage of toxins into the natural environment, among other things. Pollution is tightly controlled in most nations and several international agreements such as the Kyoto Protocol have been set up to try and put a stop to global pollution.
“Polluting at sea to become a crime” In May 2009, MEPS gave the green light to a directive that will use criminal penalties on ships that cause pollution. Member states, including Malta had 12 months to change their legislation and now, those caught polluting the sea will face the criminal sanctions imposed as determined by individual countries. The Spanish EPP member Luis de Grandes proposed that the discharge of any type of polluting substance will be seen as a criminal offence.
In the case of endangered species, criminals can commit crimes by slaughtering endangered animals, or cause damage to their natural habitats, resulting in population pressure which puts these animals in danger. Through the international agreement, most nations use severe means in order to prosecute slaughter and any other offence that causes distress to endangered species; except in the case of zoological parks and breeding programs which are trying to save these animals. Damage to habitat is an environmental crime which is more difficult to prosecute and
Last September, a BirdLife volunteer placed a sign reading “ Public Right Of Way” at Mi ieb. BirdLife said the “ police have to date not conducted a thorough search of the area (Mi ieb) for further evidence and they have not carried out a thorough investigation”
regulate, because it often involves the conflicting interests of companies and the endangered species in question. Leaving litter in a public place is an offence and one of the simplest examples of environmental crime. If, whilst in a public place you fail to clean up after your dog, you are breaking the law. The problem can be easily avoided by carrying plastic bags and cleaning up after one’ s pet. Other examples of environmental crime include pollutant emissions to air, water or soil and improper disposal of wastes especially in the trade industry. Environmental crime not only harms the environment, but it often has an impact on the economy and on general quality of the life of the populace as well. Frequently, investigations of environmental crimes uncover other crimes, such as lying to the government, fraud or conspiracy; crimes, which are prosecuted in most countries of the world. Environmental criminology covers the notions of crimes, offences and injurious behaviors against the environment and it examines the task that societies, including governments, corporations and communities play in accomplishing environmental harms. Criminology, is now arising to recognize the finite nature of the earth’ s resources and how law enforcement agencies and the judiciary measure harm to the environment and attribute sanctions to the offenders. We must ensure to have a clean, green and safe environment. If you suspect that an environmental crime has been committed, you are encouraged to report the issue. Fighting environmental crime is beneficial, because it aids to ensure that there will still be an environment for future generations to enjoy.
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Animal Experimentation At least 5 billion of US tax dollars are poured into animal experiments each year. Over 70 million animals a year are tortured and killed in US laboratories. The Fur Trade Approximately 3.5 million furbearing animals (raccoons, coyotes, bobcats and others) are killed each year by trappers. Despite the fur industry’ s attempts to downplay the role of trapping in fur productions, it is estimated that more than half of all fur garments come from trapped animals.
All these facts indicate that even though we are living in the year 2010; unfortunately, we are still hearing about cases of cruelty on animals. The time has come to raise awareness and motivate people to take action in helping the voiceless animals! The situation in Malta is no seventh Heaven! In our country it is widely known that we are still facing the problem of animals kept in bad conditions. Horse cabs are seen in the streets of Valletta and Mdina in the hot summer weather and deadly sun and yet no action is ever taken. Recently we have also heard on the news about the capture of farm animals and dogs; that were kept in farms and yards for endless nights and days without proper cleaning and care. In view of all these, I start wondering what the animal welfare is doing about such animals and to ensure that such cases are not repeated. The laws are there, written in books; but in actual fact, to what extent are they enforced to ensure that whoever is caught keeping animals in bad conditions is heavily punished and banned from bearing any animals? For ages, we have been hearing of people caught keeping dogs in shelters or garages, but unfortunately we rarely hear of any punishments for these individuals. At times one wonders how even when the animal welfare and police do their job, the courts still succeed at letting the perpetrator get away with it. At this stage a question forms naturally. When a person is kept in a bad condition or worst tortured, there is the penalty of prison involved; so why is it that when someone mistreats an animal they get away with a fine? Maybe the time has come for us to realise that animal cruelty is also a crime! Although animal welfare and sanctuaries are trying their utmost, our streets are still full of stray cats! In a few months time, the season-to-be-jolly will be around and this would be the perfect time to raise more awareness on the problem of stray cats and dogs. People should stop seeing pets as temporarily gifts that can be thrown out once fed up of! History is always repeating itself! A pet is brought home in a box (some people cannot even spot the difference between a soft toy and a real living breathing creature), all is tiny, cute and so huggable. Then it starts to grow, and soon enough it will find itself crying and scratching the front door and hitting the streets to find shelter. What is the government waiting to give
Factory Farming At least half of the 10million cows kept for milk in the US live on factory farms in conditions that cause tremendous sufferings to the animals. Laying hens are usually kept 5 or 6 to a 14 inch square cage and as many as 20% die of stress or disease from these living conditions.
us a small present this Christmas and introduce a pet registration system that will include free neutering? A highly interesting aspect of animal cruelty is that these acts of intentional maltreatment may be indicators of serious psychological problems. Studies have shown that there exist an intrinsic link between maltreating pets and domestic abuse. The probability that personnel working in shelters for battered women meet up with cases where the women have been threatened through the means of their pet’ s abuse is high. Moreover, one of the known warning signs of certain psychopathologies, including antisocial personality disorders, is a history of torturing pets and small animals, a behaviour known as zoosadism. According to the New York Times the FBI found that a history of cruelty to animals is one of the traits that regularly appears in connection to serial rapists and murderers. Robert K. Ressler, an agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’ s behavioural sciences unit, studied serial killers and noticed that “ murders like this very often start out by killing and torturing animals and kids” . It has also been proved that children who are cruel to animals have often witnessed or been victims of abuse themselves. In two separate studies by the Humane Society of the United States, roughly one-third of the families suffering from domestic abuse indicated that at least one of children has hurt or killed a pet. There are many reasons why individuals abuse animals and one must remember that animal cruelty covers a wide range of actions besides neglect. Nevertheless, learning about animal abuse has revealed behavioural patterns employed by abusers. In order to tackle cases of passive cruelty, such as: starvation, dehydration, parasite infestations, allowing a collar to grow into an animal’ s skin, inadequate shelter in extreme weather conditions; one must provide education because at times these harmful actions occur out of ignorance. It is paramount to educate our generation especially our children in schools and youth centres! Although these issues are not pleasant to deal with, seeing is believing. Feeling is the truth, and the truth of animal cruelty is painful! The Animals finally have a voice. YOU If not you? Who? If not now? When?
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Abigail Cremona (B.A. Criminology, 3nd Year FT) President (Criminology Students’ Society – University of Malta)
Fingerprints have always been the most practical and positive means of identification. Offenders, being well aware of this, have been coming up with ways to escape identification through these means. Erasing left over fingerprints, using gloves, fingerprint forgery; these are certain examples of methods that have been tried and tested by criminal masterminds over the years.
they arrested a serious criminal who was found to have changed the pattern on his fingertips by a surgical process and also changed certain areas of his palm. This criminal was an Albanian national, leader of two Albanian criminal organizations. He was arrested, yet he managed to escape prison a few times; he was engaged in offences like trafficking of human beings, drugs, prostitution and robberies.
Even though common knowledge indicates that fingerprints are permanent, these past few decades have seen many individuals trying to prove this wrong. Extremes were reached in order to obliterate fingerprints; unimaginable acts were carried out to fulfull this desire. These horrific acts include burning the tip of the fingers with fire, acid or other corrosive material; cutting and removing certain areas of finger skins; changing the skin completely by means of plastic surgery and chewing the skin off.
At times, even individuals without any criminal history are seen making use of this painful process. A woman named Yissel Sosa Nunez from the Dominican Republic, who was arrested in November 2007 by the Arizona (U.S.) custom authorities on basis of inappropriate behaviour, was found to have vague fingerprints. She admitted that she wanted to enter into the United States and was desperate to be with her child who lived there. Thus, she sought the help of a plastic surgery to cut and overlap the skin on her fingertips. She also informed the authorities that she spent $ 2000 on that plastic surgery to get her finger ridge pattern changed, and thus the border’ s security. In fact, it has become common nowadays for Border & Immigration Authorities in the U.S. to find passengers with scars and burns on fingertips, so as to avoid identification.
In 1934, in the city of Chicago, a bank robber, John Dillinger, tried to change his fingerprints and hide his identity by burning off the fingertips. Dillinger made a small cut to all his fingers and poured sulphuric acid into them, in order to remove the ridge pattern and make the fingerprints unidentifiable, nonetheless the ridge patterns reappeared after a while. Dillinger, who was also a murderer, desperado, and escapee, was shot by the Chicago Police in July 1934. Clifton Kling a US citizen managed to fool the Department of Motor Vehicles, obtaining eighty three driving licenses. Kling kept altering his appearance and thumbprint and this went unnoticed for nearly a decade, after which he was finally arrested in the year 2000. In the year 2007, in Arizona a plastic surgeon was found guilty of performing surgery on drug dealer and fugitive, Marc T. George’ s fingers. The surgeon replaced the criminal’ s finger skin with the skin from the bottom of his feet to help the person hide his identity. Marc was facing money laundering charges; he was a Jamaican national and he was arrested in May 2006, while trying to get into the U.S. through the Mexico border. In March 2007 the Netherlands police department, came across a strange case related to mutilation of fingerprints and
In early 2008, the Dominican Republic was listed as the most common location to find criminals altering their fingerprints. Many people from other countries visit the country for that purpose. It' s not uncommon to find people destructing existing finger ridge patterns to create new ones. Nowadays a brief look at the World Wide Web, would make one realize that the idea of altering one’ s fingerprints is possibly quite common. In fact, there are various websites which discuss the various methods that can be used to mutilate fingerprints and befool law enforcement agencies. Does this mean that fingerprints, the most reliable and infallible source of identification to date, should no longer be trusted? In most of these fingerprint alteration cases, experts were indeed able to make identifications, nevertheless the developing scientific technology leaves us a bit concerned. The sad truth is that it won' t be long when most people would start going for cosmetic and plastic surgeries in order to change their identity completely, including their fingers and face.
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Should one consider every person who has committed a criminal act to be a bad person? The answer to this question should be a resounding no. While it is true that every criminal act injures a person’ s liberty and is therefore bad, it would be wrong to say that the individual is bad. Man is created on the image of God and it is because of this truth that man can never be considered to be wholly bad. However, a bad action can never be considered as good. It is important to keep in mind that each case is unique; it is only by looking at things on a case by case basis that one can measure the seriousness of every act. In the summer of 2009, I was fortunate enough to meet people who suffered from severe drug problems. I spent the whole summer working at Dar Sant’ Anna which is run by Caritas. This house is the residence for men who are serving a jail sentence related to drug abuse. I found this prison to be very different from CCF. For starters, it was much more beautiful and the residents were able to live in a community while participating in a rehabilitation program. In the two months that I was there, there were fifteen inmates. Although each person was different, they had one thing in common: each person was waiting for the day when they would be free to live in society again. I met people who genuinely wished to get to know themselves better in order to be able to change their lives but ultimately everyone’ s greatest hope lay in the day when they would once again be free. The concept behind Dar Sant’ Anna is community, a community that will help people to get better and grow past their mistakes. The aim is not only that of kicking the drug habit but changing the life that led them to it. The emphasis is on getting to know oneself better in order to avoid the repetition of past mistakes. It was wonderful seeing people with the same problem come together and persevere together in order to overcome it. At first I felt uncomfortable because I felt scrutinised by them until they came to know me. A common trait shared by many of the inmates is a general dislike and disrespect for all forms of authority; however, they showed a great deal of love towards me and I couldn’ t help loving them back. I did all I could to help out in the home, in fact, I became like a resident. Sometimes I was in the cleaning and laundry department and at others I was in the kitchen or helping
out with the maintenance. I had no problem with confronting them nor they did they have a problem with confronting me when one of us did something wrong. Something that struck me profoundly is how hurt they were. These were people who were suffering because they had passed through so much in their lives. I used to try to talk to each person individually while we were working or in our free time about all that they had been through and some of them were extremely open while others preferred to say nothing. They were very preoccupied with their conduct, their unemployment and lack of money, their homes and their broken families. When they used to speak to me, I no longer saw them as prisoners but instead I saw a crucified Jesus who was stripped of all human dignity and turned out by the mob. What they used to tell me would touch my heart and I too would suffer with them even though I could do nothing but hear them out. I found that the free time we had together was the most conducive towards building relationships. We would sit down, look out onto the sea and just talk. I used to try to do everything I could to make them feel comfortable and use language that they could understand to explain what values I held dear and why. I was able to appreciate that these people who were suffering so much needed to be loved all the more. Through these people I was able to see Jesus’ suffering. He was the only path for their salvation even if not all of them could see that. Through my love I was able to show them that they were not forgotten, that there were people out there that cared for them. I always tried my best to show them my own humanity and my own weaknesses so that they would understand that Jesus loves everyone no matter how weak the person is. I tried to show them that their difficult situations were mine too. Everyone must pass through different experiences in order to attain a better knowledge of himself and in order to heal himself of sin. Despite all that they have been through, the residents of Sant’ Anna are people who are ready to give you their hearts if you give them yours. Back to the opening question: Should the criminal be considered to be a bad person by society? Yes, his action should be condemned, but he, as a person, should never be condemned; ultimately, that same criminal has a heart which is open to love like everybody else’ s.
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With the continuous development of the cyber world, new trends in crime such as bullying also develop. While in the recent past bullies existed only on playgrounds, schools or at youth centers, today they can infiltrate homes by popping up on computers via chat rooms, or on cell phones via text messaging. Locally we have practically no research upon our situation. While certain maneuvers can be originally provoked by ‘innocuous’ desires like getting virtually in touch with particular persons, social networks is also sometimes used for sending insulting or threatening messages, posting of compromising (edited) photos, spreading nasty rumors or simply creating web pages devoted to unpopular students. Females are more likely than males to be the targets of cyber bullying and even though our country doesn’ t have any statistics, we can conclude that similarly to other countries, very few cases of such cyber bullying are ultimately reported to law enforcement agencies. In fact (so much so,) in Malta, most of the reported cases seem to be those of persons posting defamatory messages after a break up or as a result of particular feuds between ‘friends’ . Although the general perception is that electronic bullies are some form of elementary-aged children, the truth is that these insidious threats know no age limit. The difference between persons of younger age and older ones is that for the average teenager, these social network sites offer an extension for their school life; but without actually being governed by rules that exist at school. Metaphorically, it is just as if during lunch time, while being with their friends, they are not under the watchful eye of the teachers. As already mentioned, the particular tools within this scenario are the so called ‘social networking websites’ . These sites have been around since the early 1990s and they have been revolutionary, enabling many of us to get in touch with old friends as well as following our favourite artist or public figure. Nevertheless these sites have become also the instru-
ment of choice for those who want to publicly humiliate others. Social networking sites offer various tools in one communication package, including a blog, a messaging tool, a photo repository and a gaming tool. With today’ s technological advances most of us posses various handheld devices such as smartphones or Ipods that can easily access these websites. This enables abusive behavior like posting embarrassing photos or conducting mean-spirited polls to spread between these so-called ‘friends’ within an impressively short time. Another growing concern in this area is the theft of user identifications and passwords. Stealing the login information of another person will enable the individual to access the particular account and post statements in that person' s name. Bullying or harassment can also be carried out through the various instant messages services that exist. It has now become quite easy for persons to open multiple email accounts in different names and adopted fake screen names. Sometimes the electronic bullies use such techniques to send profanity messages, threats, spread rumors and falsehoods about an individual. All these typical forms of e-bullying can cause emotional trauma and in some cases can also be linked to suicidal thoughts by the victim. As a criminology student I absolutely think that cyber crime, particularly cyber bullying, is in most cases underestimated and we, as Maltese should carry out extensive plans to educate teachers, prospective educators and youth leaders. I think we are under the impression that bullying is only restricted to schools and their environment, thus we leave it to them to detect and ‘punish’ such a behavior. Nonetheless, as already mentioned, the daunting threat of bullying knows no age limit or restrictions of any environment - any person can be the victim of cyber-bullying.
'$ + 2$++ ' / *' #&' !- !' %&14 The phenomenon of serial killers is one which, has had no recorded cases in Malta. However, in other parts of the word this criminal offence and the psychological causes related to it are much more common. There seems to be, according to the FBI’s crime classification manual, three main types of serial killers: the organised, disorganised and the mixed category. Those who fall under the first category tend to methodically plan their actions, usually abducting their victims and killing them in a similar manner. The disorganised killers usually kill their victims rather randomly; nevertheless, they do keep a similar profile of the victims which the assassin hunts. The mixed category is similar to that of the disorganised serial killer, but those falling in this class develop different killing methods even though there would be similar features in these murders. In this article I shall be discussing the cases of various serial killers which took place all over the world and from people of different backgrounds. Western Europe One of the notorious case was that of Jack the Ripper and the Whitechapel murders. This series of murders still have an impact on modern society intensifying the imagination of authors of various books, film directors and various conspiracy theorists on trying to understand what was passing through the mind of this murderer. What one notices, however, is the consistency, where all five victims were prostitutes. Moreover, the astute observer also notes the evolution from the just murdering to the increasing ferocity of the mutilations carried out on the victims’ bodies; with the most shocking case being that of the final victim, Mary Jane Kelly. Until this very day, no one can give a rational explanation of what led to these murders. Some say that these were made to protect the Royal Family from a moral scandal, whilst others link them to attempts to shed a bad light on the arrival of Jewish immigrants from Russia. What we do know is that there were 5 victims, and the name of Jack the Ripper still haunts the imagination of millions. Florence may seem a radically different scenario from London; however this great city, which gave the renaissance to the world, has had its own share of horror. Between 1968 and 1985, 8 couples were killed by what was labelled as the “ mostro di Firenze” (monster of Florence). The murderer followed a specific system, unleashing his violence on males trough numerous stabs and mutilating parts from women. Even though a pensioned farmer, Pietro Pacciani who had criminal precedents and, as it was revealed during court proceedings, abused his daughter, was the prime suspect for the case – Pacciani was cleared all charges by the Italian Supreme Court. Another infamous case is certainly that of Marc Dutroux in Belgium where he kidnapped, abused and killed between 1995 and 1996. To the East In the Russia, or what was once the Soviet Union, there were cases of serial murder. The wicked one remains Andrei Romanovich Chikatilo who is known as “ the Butcher of Rostov” . He was convicted of at least 53 murders of women and children around the Russian city of Rostov. He was born in the 1930s in Ukraine, at the time of the great famine planned by Stalin which left a tremendous mark on his psyche. However his life progressed and he managed to become a teacher, teaching Russian and Soviet literature, and build himself a family. Contemporarily, he would kidnap his victims from train stations and murder
them in the forest. All this was committed whilst he was imagining that he was a partisan soldier who fought in the Second World War against the Nazi occupation, as he later admitted in court. Even though at first there were some clues about his involvement in these murders, it was not until 1990 that the Soviet authorities stepped up the procedures against the murderer. By November of the same year Chikatilo was arrested. Although he showed symptoms of mental illness whilst shouting proclamations of a non-existent Ukrainan liberation front in the court room, he was sentenced to death. In 1994 Chikatilo was shot in his head; this was to be the first execution of post-soviet Russia. Female Serial killers Women seem less inclined to become serial killers but there are notable exceptions. One of these, is the oldest reported case of serial murder; that of Hungarian Countess of the 15th century, Elisabeth Bathory. Believing that bathing in the blood of young women would have assured her eternal youth she ordered the kidnapping and the brutal murder of an estimated 600 young women, even though she was convicted for the murder of 80. For this Bathory was condemned to be walled alive in her room passing the last four years of her life in solitary confinement. A much more recent case was that of Aileen Wounros from Florida. Wounros suffered abuse in her childhood, and at a young age she was already in the criminal world moving on to petty theft and prostitution. As a prostitute she was convicted of killing 7 men. At first she argued that she murdered them for self defence but later she denied everything. Wounros would also feign madness, but this did not help her elude the death sentence and she was executed in 2002. Another type of serial killing common amongst women, is the “ angel of mercy” . Typically such persons work in the health care sector and murder patients under their care or those whom they can have access to as part of their occupation. Many times this starts as a way to stop the suffering the victim goes through, as a form of euthanasia; however this develops into a morbid sadistic pleasure, or as has been seen in some cases, for the rich wills of their victims. Some notorious cases were those of Beverly Allitt, Kristen Gilbert who worked as nurses with children suffering from cancer but also that of Harold Shipman who would kill elderly without any relatives to get their will. Serial killers are certainly a very delicate but also dangerous cases. As we have seen, there were much older cases than it is believed and this phenomenon is not only reserved to one country, or a particular gender. Through the media, people may have been accustomed with the polite high-society murder of American Psycho, trying to prove his guilt who ends up acquitted because of his high position, or the sophisticated man-eating Hannibal Lecter; however reality gives us a wider and more intriguing spectrum of this phenomenon.
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‘’Io apertango a questa organizzazione criminale, molte forte e ramificata. Io mi sono sempre occupato della qualificazione degli stupefacenti. li conosco tutti. Hanno bisci, palazzi, pure una discotecca si son comprati e aparte voi commisiario nessuno li ha mai rotte le scattole perche dichono che son compagni degla mafia, dei terroristi pure de certi polizzoiti. ‘’ Fulvio Luccoli also known as il sorcio (The Rat). Romanzo Criminale
Perhaps one of the less famous criminal groups in Italy, but most probably the most sinister groups in recent Italy history is ‘La banda della Magliana’ . As the name suggests this criminal organization was born in the tough, ‘La Magliana’ neighbourhood in Rome. This criminal organization is tied to intricate mysteries such as the disappearance of the sixteen year old Emanuela Orlandoni, The attempt on John paul the second, A gangster buried in the Vatican basilica, the abduction and Murder of Aldo Moro and the bologna train bomb which left eighty persons dead and scores of other people injured. But how do these events in recent Italy’ s history converge into a group of people who came together in the poor, insignificant neighborhood of La Magliana?
Mafia would sell the drugs to these gangsters, the Banda della Magliana were to sell the drugs in Rome, since Rome was their land. The secret services had also close ties with the gang. The camorra tried to get the aid of these gangsters to get to know the whereabouts of where Aldo Moro was being held captive. This was done because probably high ranking authorities were interested in finding Moro alive and it was supposed to be a benefit for the state. At that time Aldo Moro, then president of Italy was abducted by the Brigade Rosse. It was later revealed that Aldo Moro was being held captive in a Rome apartment few blocks away from where Franco Gusepucci, the leading founder of La Banda Della Magliana, lived, coincidence? You guess.
This criminal organization came to life after a group of delinquents agreed to team up together and abduct a wealthy Rome baron and ask for ransom. The delinquents received the amount of money they asked for but killed the baron anyhow. These gangsters decided to invest the money in underground criminal activities, such as drug trafficking, arms trafficking, usury, extortion, money laundering and prostitution. This was done because the gang feared that the money obtained from the ransom money was marked and if they bought anything with the money the police would trace them in a matter of days. The plan worked fine and these delinquents soon became extremely rich. In so doing they had to murder a lot of other people, competition. In no time these bunch of small time delinquents came to be the ‘kings’ of Rome. Everyone feared them and everyone treated them with respect.
After some time Franco Gusepucci was killed and a young ambitious gangster grew to take his place as the leader of La Banda Della Magliana, Enrico De Pedis also known as Renatino De Pedis. De Pedis was the only one of the gang to have an entrepreneur spirit, and he grew extremely rich as did other members of the organization. De Pedis was killed by another gangster in the 1990 only to be revealed years later that De Pedis was buried in a basilica in the Vatican! Not long ago it was revealed that an ex gang member by the name of Mario said that he was the actual killer of the young Emanuela Orlandoni.
In no time at all, these small time hoodlums had contacts with the secret services, the mafia, facists groups, Camorra and politicians on a national scale. The mafia was there wholesaler for the drugs, in fact it was agreed that while the
Apart from this Ali Acga, the man held responsible for the attempt on Jon Paul’ s the second life, had been in contact with the gang. In fact it was even alleged that the gang were in contacts with Vatican law enforcement officers in order to exchange Emanuela Orlandoni with Mehmet Ali Agca. These shady characters have written perhaps one of the most sinister chapters in Italy’ s history. This story is not only a story of crime, betrayals and corruption; it is one of the major Italy’ s mysteries as it remains today.
Gambling Written by Josianne Azzopardi – sedqa S.A.F.E. Programme Coordinator A lot of us dream of becoming rich instantly so that we can live a comfortable life. In an attempt to make this dream come true, many people gamble with the hope of winning money. But gambling can become an addiction just like any drug. Both drug addicts and gamblers search for instant gratification, that is, they seek immediate satisfaction/enjoyment from the drug/gambling act. There are a lot of different types/forms of gambling such as: poker machines; casino table SUPER 10 – Ten warning signs for problem gambling. games like blackjack or roulette; sports betting including betting on horse and 1. You start borrowing money from friends and colleagues. dog racing; internet casinos and betting; card games; lotto tickets or scratch 2. Your friends and colleagues begin to avoid your company. cards; bingo and raffle tickets. 3. Your family, friends or colleagues are trying to find out if you are in places that are associated with gambling. There are systems that make it easier to predict winning lotto numbers. The facts: Not true. It doesn’ t matter how the numbers are chosen; the odds of 4. You realize you are not socializing like you used to. winning are always the same. The selection is purely by chance. Each number 5. You find you are leaving your children/family unathas the same chance of being selected. Therefore, it is only a matter of luck, tended. 6. You find you are gambling frequently or increasingly either good or bad. often. 7. You rush to (or wait for) a machine when it comes free. Gambling is exciting and adds to the fun. The facts: For sure there is some excitement attached to the fact that one is 8. You become agitated, aggressive or abusive towards othtaking a risk to win. However, there is very little excitement involved in losing ers or towards the machines. money. Problem gamblers often admit that they feel unhappy, anxious, wor- 9. You think you have a ‘special’ or lucky machine or playing spot. ried and upset. 10. You are gambling while under the influence of alcohol. People can generally win their money back. The facts: This is simply not true. Casinos exist because people don’ t win their money back. How long would a casino that pays out more winning than raking in profits be able to stay in business? The fact is that the gamblers’ lost money keep casinos open. Those numbers which have been drawn recently are less likely to get drawn again. The facts: Not true. All the numbers have the same chance of being drawn, irrespective of when they were last drawn. What can you do? Decrease the chance that you’ ll develop a gambling problem by: • Limiting the amount of money that you gamble • Limiting the amount of time that you spend on gambling • Involving yourself in social activities • Refraining from gambling back any money you win Alcohol effects. Written by Jareth M Grima – Sedqa Community Executive. A lot of us drink alcohol during events, parties, celebration and social events, but not all of us know its side effects. Alcohol is a depressant which must be controlled in order not to leave unwanted consequences. Some of us drink in order to be more confident and to release their nerves and sadness. It’ s not true that alcohol would leave such effect. Alcohol is a depressant which leaves impact on our whole body. It reduces our ability to judge distances, sensitivity, maintain balance and loss of mental concentration amongst other negative things.
Alcohol and Gambling can become a problem for everybody, irrelevant of age, sex, educational background or social class. The alcohol / gambling problem does not affect just the user but also those around him/her (family, friends and colleagues). During Fresher’s Week our aim is not to discuss negative issues, but to promote creativity and talent to help you as youth live a healthy life.Your self esteem could be enhanced by positive thinking and giving the best in your life in your environment. Don’t hesitate to come forward to talk to us during Fresher’s as we are willing to connect with your experience and relate with you. Come forward and talk to us as we can give a helping hand. If you are concerned about your own or somebody else’ s gambling or drinking you can seek help by phoning Helpline 179 (24 hours a day) or Sedqa number on 23885 110.
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De Wallen in Amsterdam or as it is better known, the Red Light District, has acquired a well known reputation for sex tourism. From brothels to sex shops, women of all nationalities parade their goods in red-fringed window parlour, leaving nothing to the imagination. The team of Gh.S.K. have noticed that the agenda behind human trafficking and prostitution is an issue which is seldom discussed thus people are not aware of the current situation. On 9th August 2010, the GHSK team met with a member of the Netherlands Police Department who is currently working to specialize in the area of prositution and Traffiking of Human Beings (THB) in the Netherlands to investigate all the mysteries and rumors that surround this underworld! At the start of the interview Mr. Groothuismink immediately expressed that human trafficking in the Netherlands is mainly for the sole purpose of prostitution, contrary to the unfounded rumour that human trafficking is carried out in order to feed the industry of organ trafficking. He claimed that victims of human trafficking are commonly brought over from countries such as the Dominican Republic, Bulgaria, Russia and Africa withwhereby the latter is very evident from the number of African prostitutes in Amsterdam. With regards to legislation, prostitution is legal in Holland. This is evident through the concentrated areas, such as the Red Light District, Amsterdam, where it has been enjoying a long period of tolerance and acceptance. Since October 2000, window prostitutes have been allowed to legally ply their trade. Nowadays, prostitutes in the Netherlands are also taxpayers; and being a legal profession, the government can ensure that all prostitutes are able to access medical care and work in best conditions by regulating and monitoring working practices and standards. Help is also at hand in the district itself thanks to the Prostitution Information Centre. Contrary to popular belief, the RLD is actually the safest area in Amsterdam as clusters of policemen and private bodyguards employed by the girls themselves are always on duty. Private strip clubs and escort ladies are also legal businesses in Amsterdam. Nevertheless, one of the biggest problems with escort ladies is that, not being able to permit pimps or managers; these escorts will, more often than not, end up getting abused physically as well as financially. Prostitutes are obliged to pay tax just like any other common worker, as the act of prostitution is seen as a job in its own right – this is only valid if the person is doing it out of his or her own free will. Mr. Groothuismink believes that although prostitution is legalized in his home country, most prostitutes are coming from illegal human trafficking. We also asked Mr. Groothuismink if it would constitute a crime to deceive a person into performing certain works or services, and he replied that if a lap dancer ends up working as a prostitute through persuasion from a third party, this
would be considered as “ pimping” ; and thus this could be defined as human trafficking according to the Netherland legislation. When it comes to the local scenario, on August 18th 2010 a case was heard in court where a mother of five, described as being “ obsessed” of her unemployed boyfriend, offered to prostitute herself when the couple could not keep up with the bills. The 24 year old ‘gentleman’ admitted to having lived off the earnings from the prostitution of his girlfriend. This earned him a 6 month jail term suspended for 2 years, and the magistrate issued a protection order banning him from seeing his girlfriend. Shockingly, a recent report by an international anti-child abuse organisation revealed that Malta is a destination country for women- and children- trafficking for sexual purposes from Eastern European countries including Ukraine, Russia and Romania. In many cases these victims enter Malta legally on a tourist visa, after which they are typically exploited for commercial sex acts and then trafficked to be “ sold” every three months. The End Child Prostitution Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes (ECPAT) stated that the young women recruited for prostitution from these Eastern European countries are essentially “ purchased” by Maltese men. Even though in recent months the laws on child pornography and money laundering have drastically improved; Malta has been named as the EU country that has the most lags when it comes to implementing the Hague Programme action plan, which encapsulates the EU’ s efforts in the fight against crime including anti-trafficking. Mr. Groothuismink said that in his opinion there is not enough awareness on this problem back in his homeland and possibly even in Malta. He said that people in the immigration unit know about the current situation but the civilians have no idea on the extent of the problem. He claimed that such a situation should be made more public through the use of the media, especially television where you can reach a bigger population. For those who are interested in getter a better understanding on the traumas such victims go through or how this underground criminal activity operates, we suggest mature readers watch the films Shuttle (featuring actors: Tony Curran, Peyton List, Cullan Douglas and Cameron Goodman) and Human Trafficking (featuring actors: Mira Sorvino, Donald Sutherland and Robert Carlyle). Throughout our interview it became evident that spreading valuable information to the public on this subject is crucial. Thus it is essential that Gh.S.K. sheds some light on the realities that surround human trafficking amongst the public especially to students, since the majority of human trafficking cases are directed towards young and healthy looking people, men and women alike!
(Continued from page 8)
20th November 2009. Members of the jury were told to acquit Thomas, as he had suffered “ night terrors” for about 50 years without ever getting treatment. Afterwards, experts said that about 2% of the population in the UK suffered from the condition, also known as pavor nocturnus. It is possible that many other similar attacks were carried out, and since they did not have any fatal consequences, they went unreported. As many as 10% of children in the UK suffer from pavor nocturnes and although most of them grow out of it, at least 2% of adults carry on having terrible, vivid dreams. Chris Idzikowski of the London Sleep Centre was an expert witness in the Thomas case. He said it was known for people to attack partners while having a nightmare. Most cases went unreported because no serious damage is caused and those involved are often embarrassed to discuss it with outsiders. Both pavor nocturnus and other conditions such as REM sleep behaviour disorder – a violent episode during the rapid eye movement stage of sleep – can be controlled with drugs. The defence of automatism in sleepwalking cases occupies an unusual and complex place in the criminal law. It is unusual because fewer than 70 cases of homicidal somnambulism exist in modern legal history; and it is complex because
automatism is multi faceted and difficult to categorise, both medically and penologically. Automatism can be characterised as either insane or non insane. The insane variant corresponds to the insanity defence under the McNaghten Rules; which requires, in murder cases, the verdict of disposal to a mental institution. Non insane automatism, however, if successfully pleaded, leads to an outright acquittal. The legal debate centres on which variant should be applied to a given set of facts. Should the courts find a homicide committed under a sleepwalking episode as insane automatism, as with Burgess? Or should they apply the non-insane variant, as with the recent case of Thomas? Under the current law, a sleepwalker who has a history of somnambulism can be categorised as ‘non guilty by reason of insanity’ and, if accused of murder, will be detained indefinitely in a mental hospital. However, when the sleepwalking episode is provoked to commit a crime by external factors such as violence, alcohol or drugs, the defendant will be acquitted. In Malta there does not seem to be any records of crimes during sleepwalking, or if there ever were similar crime these were not reported. Although, it is best if such crimes would not occur, it would still be interesting to analyse how the Maltese courts would treat such a particular type of case; especially because, just like in foreign courts, the rarity of such cases has not yet produced a standard theory that direct the courts.
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Published on Oct 2, 2010