This chapter addresses arms trafficking in four sections: the nature and extent of the harm; the structure of arms trafficking (considered in terms of source, transit and demand); regulation and control; and finally a discussion about arms trafficking as business enterprise. The various routines and usual patterns of arms trafficking are reviewed, including vulnerable stockpiles, markets in military weapons, state involvement, and large-scale trafficking, as well as consumer markets and small-time smuggling. The structure of arms trafficking networks is considered, looking at facilitators and brokers as well as the central players such as notorious high-level traffickers like Viktor Bout. Regulation and prosecution is shown to be challenging, with various factors inherent to this form of trafficking adding up to severe difficulties for those who aim to control the problem. As with other chapters, the final section works through the business aspects of arms trafficking, integrating emotional and cultural considerations into the cold economics of the crime, to give us a rounded view of the supply and demand dynamics in markets for illegal weapons.
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