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The illicit market in diamonds



After reviewing the advantages of diamonds for illegal trade, this paper discusses the strategies used by organised crime for diamond theft at each stage of the diamond pipeline. The trade in illegally obtained diamonds, including conflict diamonds, is described, and the level of risk in Australia is estimated. A cash flow case study is presented for the Argyle Diamond Mine, showing a potential loss to illicit trade of between 1-14% of total production. The paper also discusses local, national and international responses to the problem of diamond theft, and emphasises the need for a coordinated national response which would share information held by various agencies and facilitate international engagement.

Cite article

Tailby R. 2002. The illicit market in diamonds. Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice No. 218. Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology. https://aic.gov.au/publications/tandi/tandi218