The new global organised crime index places Portugal in the most positive quadrant, which combines low levels of crime and a high score for resilience against these types of crime.

Only 50 of the 193 members of the United Nations (UN) make this list, including 24 other European countries such as Germany, Belgium, the United Kingdom and all the Baltic and Nordic countries.

Portugal is ranked as the 117th country with the lowest crime rate, with a score of 4.55 on a scale of 0 to 10, with the most frequent types of organised crime being drug trafficking, especially cocaine, and human trafficking.

Regarding drug trafficking, Portugal is deemed to be a transit and destination country for the trafficking of cocaine, which was the most seized drug in 2018. On the other hand, it is also a country of origin for cannabis, which then goes mainly to other countries in Europe, Brazil and Guinea-Bissau.

As for human trafficking, the report states that Portugal “is a country of origin, transit and destination for human trafficking”, with the majority of victims arriving from Moldova, while those who are “exported” go mainly to Spain.

In addition to the types of crime, the crime rate also looks at the types of perpetrator and, at this level, criminal networks are the most frequent, consisting of small family groups mostly involved in internal drug trafficking, but also in exploitation in rural areas.

“Criminal networks operating in Portugal often establish working relationships with foreign networks, which are responsible for the production and transport of drugs, or for the recruitment and transport of victims to Portugal,” adds the report, which also identifies specific organised gangs of a mafia style in Portugal, such as the biker groups of Los Bandidos and the Hells Angels.