The Russian Mafia

Federico Varese

in The Russian Mafia

Published in print August 2001 | ISBN: 9780198297369
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191600272 | DOI:
The Russian Mafia

Show Summary Details


An assessment is made of the role of the vory-v-zakone (thieves-with-a-code-of-honour – the criminal fraternity that flourished in the Soviet labour camps between the 1920s and the 1950s, and re-emerged in the 1970s) in the post-Soviet criminal world. The features of the new society are described (the existence of territorial groups of vory, and their organizational structure, activities, inter-group relations, and role) and the Russian Mafia is identified as groups that share vory rituals and norms of interaction and are federated with one another. The future of the Russian Mafia is then briefly evaluated amidst the emergence of two powerful competitor groups who do not share the rituals and traditions of the vory: the Chechen Mafia and the Cossacks. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the connections between politics, the church, terrorism, and the modern criminal fraternity.

Keywords: activities; Chechen Mafia; church; competitor groups; Cossacks; criminal fraternity; inter-group relations; organization; politics; Russian Mafia; territorial groups; terrorism; thieves-with-a-code-of-honour; vory-v-zakone

Chapter.  8220 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Politics

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.