UN Estimates That Crime Generated $2.1 Trillion Globally in 2009


Crime generates an estimated $2.1 trillion in global annual proceeds, or 3.6 percent of the world’s gross domestic product, and the problem may be growing, Reuters reports. “It makes the criminal business one of the largest economies in the world, one of the top 20 economies,” Yury Fedotov, head of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, said this week in Vienna. The figure was calculated recently for the first time by the UN and World Bank, based on data for 2009.

Speaking on the opening day of a week-long meeting of the international Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, he suggested the situation may be worsening “but to corroborate this feeling I need more data.” He said up to $40 billion is lost through corruption in developing countries annually and illicit income from human trafficking amounts to $32 billion every year.

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