International business encounters organized crime: the case of trafficking in human beings

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With increasing globalization, transnational crime in general, and human trafficking in particular, a design of new legal framework is required in order to effectively operationalize interstate law enforcement operations and prosecutions. The development of a transnational criminal legal framework—or frameworks—can build on pre-existing transnational economic frameworks. There is also the need to extend the application of domestic law beyond national borders to influence transnational corporate behavior. Regulations based on reflexive law are one possible approach. Teubner’s idea of reflexive law has been informing developments in this area. This approach uses traditional national law to inform corporate governance strategies in order to achieve effects on the market. A few jurisdictions have already adopted measures modeled on this approach to tackle human trafficking and slavery-like conditions in global supply chains. Weaknesses in the approaches adopted by the UK and the State of California have already been identified. If strengthened, this approach could be adopted in more jurisdictions—including the EU—and also to combat more areas of transnational crime—such as money laundering. This paper will examine the resulting challenges using human trafficking as a case study.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1125-1147
Number of pages23
JournalGerman Law Journal
Issue number5
Early online date1 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • Organized crime
  • Human trafficking
  • Money laundering
  • International business
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • European Union


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