Who are the enforcers? The motives and methods of muscle for hire in West Scotland and the West Midlands

Mohamed Rahman*, Robert McLean, Ross Deuchar, James Densley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Enforcement, ranging from threats, intimidation, to assault and homicide, has long been an established practice within criminal networks. However, comparatively little academic research exists about the nature and role of enforcers within and beyond the context of contract killings. Drawing on qualitative interviews with criminal enforcers from two contrasting sites within the UK—the West Scotland and the West Midlands—the current study examines the articulated, identifiable pathways into criminal enforcement; the nuanced nature of enforcement and the roles those men commonly adopt within the context of organised crime, and the relationship between these men’s activity, the wider context of organised crime, and presence of social and cultural capital within it. This article provides insights into how one becomes an enforcer; how contact is made between all parties involved; the degree of planning involved; and costing arrangements, with important implications for research and practice.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages22
JournalTrends in Organized Crime
Early online date21 May 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 May 2020

Keywords

  • Bourdieu
  • debt collecting
  • enforcement
  • hitman
  • organised crime
  • violence

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