ORC and Evidence of Terrorism Links Hayes 2003
Evidence of Terrorism Funding by Organized Theft and Fraud Networks
Read Hayes, PhD, CPP
Loss Prevention Research Council and University of Florida
It is well documented that organized theft and fraud networks plague US retailers and manufacturers costing them an estimated $15 billion annually (Delahoyde, 2000; FBI, 2000; Food Marketing Institute, 2001; Guarino, 2002; Hayes and Rogers, 2003a and b; Lomanno, 2002; Miller, 2003; WBAL, 2001).
Organized Retail Crime, or ORC, involves systematic shoplifting by professional thieves that target items they know are in high demand and provide steady and profitable cash flow, check and credit card fraud, cargo and supply chain thefts and diversions, employee fraud and collusion, and merchandise refund fraud (Hayes and Rogers, 2003b).
ORC activities cost their victims considerably since select items that have already been paid for are stolen in quantity meaning the cost of goods, handling expenses and potential profits are all lost. Product loss also decreases consumer sales and satisfaction since popular merchandise is often not available for sale after organized thefts. Theft and hijacking incidents also generate violence and fear of crime for employees and customers.
Interviews of ORC thieves and fences reveal that proceeds from theft and fraud activities provide substantial support for themselves and their other illicit activities including drug and weapons purchase and sales, counterfeiting of products and packaging, and police corruption. Informant and offender interviews also reveal that some ORC proceeds also help directly and indirectly support terrorist activities