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10 Biggest Illegal Businesses Around the World

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This is an open secret that illegal businesses are one of the biggest businesses across the globe. Drug trafficking is one of the most rated illegal businesses which covers a major part of the revenue of all illegal criminal activities around the world. According to the United Nations Corporation on Drug and Crime, illegal drug trade has more than US $600 Billion profit annually. These activities are always a big challenge for the government and many countries have strict laws against these kinds of illegal things but there businesses are still expanding. Scroll down and read more on 10 Biggest Illegal Businesses across the globe.

10. Human Organs Trafficking

Human Organs Trafficking1Photo credit: Huffinttonpost

Human organ trading involves inner organs for transplantation. Commercial trading of organs is illegal in all countries except Iran. There is a worldwide shortage of organs and hence the problem of illegal organ trafficking is increasing. Every year, more than 2000 Indians sell their kidneys at very low price while recipients pay more than $200,000 for a kidney. A report by Global Financial Integrity estimates that the illegal organ trades make profit between $600 million and $1.2 billion a year.

9. Oil Trading

Oil Trading1Photo credit: wikimedia

Illegal oil trading is also a major problem in some countries including Nigeria. It is estimated that more than 100,000 oil barrels are smuggled out each day. In Mexico, oil companies lose $700 million annually when thieves tap into their oil pipelines. Every year, a large part of the oil is attacked by the Somalia pirates on the coast of the Somalia. It is estimated that illegal oil makes more than $15 billion every year.

8. Wildlife Trafficking

Wildlife traffickingPhoto credit: wikimedia

Illegal trade in wildlife is one of the illegal largest trades. This problem is addressed by the United Nations organization, called CITES. The illegal trade includes exotic pets, meat and skins of wild animals, fresh water tortoise and turtles, monitor lizards and shark’s fin. Between 2007 2012, the poaching of rhinos is increased to 5000%. Some major examples of illegal wildlife trade are elephants for its teeth and lion and tigers for their skins. In 2012, the profit produced is around $32 billion.

7. Bootlegging

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Bootlegging or rum running is the illegal business which includes the transporting of alcohol. During the American civil war, some ships illegally started transportation of cheap Caribbean rum to Florida. Alcohol smuggling is still known worldwide. They illegally trade alcohol to avoid tax and minimum purchase price. The United Kingdom’s government fails to collect an estimated tax of $2 billion due to illegal alcohol smuggling activities. Bootlegged alcohol causes thousands of deaths annually because of low quality and standard.

6. Illegal Currency Production

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Illegal Currency production or counterfeit money is the production of currency without the legal permission of the government. Some people do it to save tax on foreign money exchange. Illegal money has many bad effects on society such as reduction of real money and increase in price of goods. To reduce this, governments of every country have declared a standard of their currency. According to the statistics, there are 100 fake currencies in every one million US dollar.

5. Human Trafficking

Human Trafficking1Photo credit: Pixabay

Human trafficking is the trade of humans for the aim of erotic bondage, force labor, illegal trades of organs, surrogacy or forced marriages. Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing illegal activities around the world. It is a crime because of the victim’s human rights. In 2010, human trafficking has an estimated international trade of over $30 billion. In case of child trafficking, more than 30% of trafficked persons are less than 18 years.

4. Gambling

Gambling1Photo credit: wikimedia

Gambling means the betting of money on several games. Three main elements of gambling are consideration, luck and prize. It includes all table games such as poker, bingo, pool, lottery, card games and coin tossing games. In some countries, gambling is a major part of their country’s GDP. Illegal betting includes betting on sports like cricket, football, horse race and basketball. Gambling is one of the major international activities with the legal gambling market of $335 billion, only in 2009. Now you can imagine the total assets involved in illegal market of gambling.

3. Illegal Weapon Trafficking

Illegal Weapon Trafficking1Photo credit: wikimedia

Illegal weapon trafficking (gunrunning) is the smuggling of weapons. It includes explosives, small guns, light weapons and heavy machine guns. The illegal weapon trading is also responsible for the terrorist activities. As per report, every year an estimated 63 million guns have been trafficked to India and Pakistan. It is very difficult to even to guess the total size of the illegal arm trade market. The United States and Africa are considered as the countries with the most illicit weapons. An estimated value of illegal arm trafficking is around $60 billion a year which is around 20% of the total global arm trade.

2. Counterfeit

Counterfeit1Photo credit: wikimedia

Counterfeit means fake and imitate. Counterfeit products are the dummy or copied versions of the real products. Counterfeit product includes clothes, shoes, electronic products, art and pirate software and movies. It also includes fake company logos and brands. According to the 2007 OECD report, the market of counterfeit goods crossed more than $250 billion worldwide. The counterfeiting of goods is completely banned in numerous places still Counterfeit money is the most popular and major problem in many countries.

1. Drug Trafficking

Drug Trafficking - Illegal Businesses around the worldPhoto credit: wikimedia

Illegal Drug trafficking is the biggest black market in the world. According to 2003 a UN report, the global illegal drug trade generated an estimated of $320 billion. Many countries have very strict laws against drug trading but it is still a major problem in our society. Most of the countries interdict drug trading except licensed dealers. This illegal trade is linked with many crimes and most of the deaths were drug related.