Title

Social Architecture of Modern-day Political Extortion

Presenter Information

Joseph McFadden

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom A

Start Date

17-5-2012

End Date

17-5-2012

Abstract

What is the social architecture of modern-day political extortion rackets? Sociometrics will be created using the book Heist by Peter Stone. Sociometrics offers a set of analytical tools that enable social researchers and criminal investigators to "map out" the social action of criminal conspiracies. This study uses sociometrics of archival data to map out who did what with whom in the infamous Jack Abramoff political extortion racket involving some of the biggest political stars in recent US history. The findings show that Abramoff used his structural position of betweenness to extort millions of dollars from Indian casinos. The Heist involves six casinos, dozens of congressional politicians and others. The study shows the utility ofsocio metrics in criminal investigations in mapping out the social relations between the targets of political extortion, politicians, shell companies, conduits and the extortionists themselves.

Poster Number

32

Faculty Mentor(s)

Erik Cheney

Additional Mentoring Department

Sociology

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May 17th, 2:00 PM May 17th, 4:30 PM

Social Architecture of Modern-day Political Extortion

SURC Ballroom A

What is the social architecture of modern-day political extortion rackets? Sociometrics will be created using the book Heist by Peter Stone. Sociometrics offers a set of analytical tools that enable social researchers and criminal investigators to "map out" the social action of criminal conspiracies. This study uses sociometrics of archival data to map out who did what with whom in the infamous Jack Abramoff political extortion racket involving some of the biggest political stars in recent US history. The findings show that Abramoff used his structural position of betweenness to extort millions of dollars from Indian casinos. The Heist involves six casinos, dozens of congressional politicians and others. The study shows the utility ofsocio metrics in criminal investigations in mapping out the social relations between the targets of political extortion, politicians, shell companies, conduits and the extortionists themselves.