This Present Darkness: A History of Nigerian Organised Crime by Stephen Ellis

This Present Darkness analyses how Nigeria acquired its unfortunate reputation as an epicentre of global illicit trade and organised crime.

Celebrated Africanist Stephen Ellis traces the origins of the phenomenon to the last years of colonial rule, when nationalist politicians offered government contracts in return for kickbacks. Political corruption encouraged a wider disrespect for the law that spread throughout Nigerian society. When the country’s oil boom came to an end in the early 1980s, young Nigerian college graduates headed abroad, eager to make money by any means, and Nigerian crime went global at the very moment new criminal markets were emerging all over the world.

Stephen Ellis’ last book is the first to chart this globally significant phenomenon, from drugs, fraud and cyber-crime, to smuggling and people trafficking.

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