The World History of Organized Crime

From Hong Kong to Sicily, this gripping set examines five of the world's most notorious criminal syndicates. The World History of Organized Crime travels the globe to get an insider's view of some of the most active, dangerous and diabolical criminal syndicates in existence. The five episodes focus on a different region, examining the conditions that helped create these groups, talking to law enforcement specialists about how they are being fought, and relating true stories of famous cases.

Sicily: With its long history of foreign occupations, the people of Sicily have created a culture of self-reliance, honor, and distrust for authority. With this in place, La Cosa Nostra emerged in the late 1800s and was able to put a stranglehold on their country that went virtually unthreatened until the late 1980s. It was then that Judge Giovanni Falcone began to prosecute and convict them with the aid of Tommaso Buscetta's testimony.

Russia: After the fall of the Soviet Union, Russia switched to a free market economy, opening the doors for the Red Mafia to take control of an estimated 40% of the nation's economy. As one of the most fearsome, violent, creative, and well-educated criminal organizations in the world, the Red Mafia has been difficult to locate and shut down.

China: This program examines the secretive history of the Triads, their traditions, their influence in America, and their main export - human cargo.

India: Located in Bombay, "Bollywood" is one of the most prolific and profitable film industries in the world. Unfortunately, it is also the target of the underground mob, which aided the industry previously when the government refused to help them with financing. The program also explores the roots of this mob and traces them back to the "Thugs" of the 19th century.

Colombia: Focused on the Cartels and, in particular, Pablo Escobar, this program explains how Colombia's most lucrative export – cocaine – shaped it into a country of violence and corruption. Using narco-terrorism and bribes, the Cartels quickly came to control Colombia, but even their dissolution didn't end the seemingly unstoppable flow of drugs.

Watch the full documentary now (playlist)