Australian Institute of Criminology

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10 Myths about Terrorist Financing

74 Leichhardt Street, Griffith ACT
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM 21 September 2011

Bill Tupman

Presentation overview

Bill Tupman

This presentation will outline 10 myths of terrorist financing policy. The presentation applies the literature on crime as a business, to policy on terrorist financing and concludes that there are loosely organised networks that engage in the fund-raising processes of political movements as a whole, as well as for armed wings of movements in particular. Financing methods vary with type of group and over time.

It is contended that the funds seized have not been primarily for terrorist financing and that in some cases seizure has done more harm than good.  Further, that thought needs to be given to the impact of funding seizures beyond just newspaper headlines. More effective impact can be made on terrorist financing if a more complex approach is taken, rather than perpetuating the existing myths, which alienate communities instead of deterring terrorists.

Bill Tupman is a semi-retired academic from the University of Exeter, where he was Director of the Centre for Police and Criminal Justice Studies for 10 years and then Director for the Research on Community Safety unit. He took early retirement in 2005 to develop consultancy work with a variety of clients.

He began working on urban guerrilla warfare, rural guerrilla warfare, revolutionary warfare and terrorism in the 1970s, when he, and General Richard Clutterbuck, ran a joint course at the University. He also worked as an external tutor on courses preparing UK Army officers for Staff College entry and as advisor to the Police Inspectors’ Development Course.

He edits the blog for the Standing Group on Organised Crime of the European Consortium for Political Research http://sgoc.blogspot.com/. He and his team evaluated Project ARC (Addressing Repeat Criminality) for Avon and Somerset Police in a Beacon Award scheme, funded by the Home Office 2000-2001. In 2004 he acted as UK “expert” and wrote a report on UK criminal records and investigatory databases for an AGIS project on the feasibility of an EU database on investigations and prosecutions. He is in the process of building a group of PhD students researching aspects of organized crime investigation at Anglia Ruskin University in the UK, having completed the supervision of a group researching jihadist de-radicalisation.

He is at present researching terrorism and organised crime, particularly terrorist financing. Ten Myths of Terrorist Financing was published in the Journal of Money Laundering Control during 2009. He is the author with Alison Tupman of the book: Policing in Europe: Diversity in Uniform. He lectures and publishes widely to a variety of audiences on subjects related to terrorism, organized crime, cross-border policing and information technology.