Transnational organized crime (TOC) is one of the most virulent plagues of the twenty-first century – a ‘great pestilence’ that people may not always notice. It is a quiet pandemic that is spreading across the world with varying degrees of potency and often unnoticed mortality. TOC is often simplistically seen as entirely a product of globalization. Thus, it is argued that without globalization there would be no TOC, but this is far from the truth. In the academic community, organized crime and TOC are rather contentious issues. There are four main subjective problems that puzzle academics when they deal with the task of analysing TOC. First, there is still the question of defining TOC, which remains a major stumbling block for the academic community. Second, the theoretical approach adopted influences the type of analysis produced. Third, there is the use of TOC by politicians to pursue their own political agenda.