The policing of our society no longer stops at the borders of the UK. Criminal networks take advantage of technology and communications to exploit weak spots in the international system. This feeds crime in the UK and undermines good governance and development elsewhere. We need to act against such networks. There are many forms of organised crime posing a threat to the UK, most notably trafficking in Class A drugs and organised immigration crime, but also money laundering, sex offences against children, hi-tech crime and excise fraud (particularly tobaccos smuggling).
All of these criminal activities have a foreign dimension, and the majority can be addressed most effectively through collaboration and co-operation with foreign governments and their law enforcement agencies. Through judicial and law enforcement co-operation we aim to increase the probability of detection, disrupt criminal activity and remove the profit motive through seizure of the proceeds of crime.
It is now more important than ever that a concerted approach is made to co-operate on an international level to tackle all aspects of the drugs problem and international crime in a comprehensive, co-ordinated and balanced way. The FCO's specific aims include:
- Developing effective, cross-Government policies to tackle underlying problems in other countries which can encourage international crime, including conflict and poverty.
- Helping to establish the rule of law in the Balkans, Afghanistan and Iraq.
- Providing counter-narcotics training to law enforcement agencies in Afghanistan, Jamaica, Colombia, Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, the Balkans and other key source and transit countries.
- Leading UK efforts to end poppy cultivation in Afghanistan.
- Strengthening the EU's contribution to dealing with drugs, crime and people-trafficking worldwide.
- Improving the effectiveness of UN Agencies, Interpol and the Financial Action Task Force in tackling crime.