EDITORIAL: WHY CAN’T POLICE ARREST SCAMMERS?
The Process Of Arresting Criminals Outside Of Your Country Is Complicated
Let’S Start With A Few Basic Facts!
Some scammers are local, and these are treated as local crimes. Regardless of which country you live in, local criminals are investigated and arrested all the time!
Almost every local police department has a “Bunko Squad” to investigate and apprehend con artists, fraudsters, and scammers in your local communities or country. Cops do a good job (generally) of keeping local scams under control.
However, 95% of all online scams originate from another country, and this is where it gets VERY tricky.
When you want to arrest a criminal in another country and then return them to your country for trial this has to be done by an “Extradition” treaty, and even then the local courts have to agree with the extradition. As we have seen in the case of the African countries, they are not very willing to extradite scammers to stand trial in another country.
Of course the victim could go to the African country and file criminal complaints against the scammer, but this is rarely effective. First it is extremely dangerous to the victim physically. Second the local police are totally corrupt and will ignore the victim. Of course the victim can bribe the local police but this can either result in the loss of their money, or have them be arrested for bribery. Either way, the victim loses even more.
Let’s Talk About Extradition
Extradition is the act by one jurisdiction of delivering a person who has been accused of committing a crime in another jurisdiction or has been convicted of a crime in that other jurisdiction – into the custody of a law enforcement agency of that other jurisdiction. (When we say “jurisdiction” think “country”)
It is a cooperative law enforcement process between the two countries and depends on the arrangements made between them. This means that they have to have a “TREATY” in place for this to happen, and that treaty needs to include the specific types of crimes covered.
If a country does not have an extradition treaty in place then criminals are complete safe. For example, Costa Rica does NOT have an extradition treaty with most other countries – so it is a criminal haven.
Besides the legal aspects of the process, extradition also involves the physical transfer of custody of the person being extradited to the legal authority of the requesting country.
Through the extradition process, one country typically makes a formal request to another country where they believe the criminal is living or hiding. If the criminal (fugitive) is found within the territory of the other country, then the requesting country may ask that they arrest the fugitive and subject him or her to its extradition process. The extradition procedures are dependent on the law and practice of the country where the criminal is found.
This involves a court process usually, and it is not certain that their local courts will even agree with a treaty, It is totally voluntary.
Between countries, extradition is normally regulated by treaties. Where extradition is compelled by laws, such as among countries, the concept may be known more generally as rendition.
One of the first problems is determining the proper identity of a scammer. Most victims do not know the proper identity of a scammer. They have names and sometimes more information, but that is just the information the victim was given, and usually more investigation is needed to either confirm the identity of the scammer or discover their real identity.
Just because the victim has a name of someone picking up money does not mean that it is the scammer or even a real person. Scammers have “Moles” at the money transfer agencies, and it is up to the agent to confirm an identity or not. The entire money transfer system in Africa is corrupted by scammers.
Confirming A Crime Suitable For Extradition
In many African countries scamming is really not much of a crime. After all, the victim voluntarily sent their money to a scammer. They really don’t view this as a crime or not a serious crime.
Only when U.S. or European Law Enforcement goes directly to the country involved can they obtain the cooperation of the local African Country. Unfortunately, this is both expensive and very time consuming, and law enforcement rarely will take these steps.
The result is that a critical lack of resources and weak system of treaties allows most scammers to get away with it.
Only by changing these treaties will we be able to more effectively enforce our laws against global online crime. Changing treaties is a complicated process and requires the approval of both countries involved. However, it is possible, and by pressuring politicians this process can be moved forward.
However it is important to always report scammers, since this alerts other potential victims AND allows law enforcement to place them on “Watch Lists”. These watch lists allow for the arrest of the scammer when they cross an international border! So please always report scammers on this website or on www.Anyscam.com and to your local law enforcement.
Miami Florida U.S.A.
Copyright © 2018 Society of Citizens Against Romance Scams [SCARS]