1. Violet_Haze03

    Violet_Haze03 New Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3

    Intrigued and not making a lot of progress- questions about criminal activity

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Violet_Haze03, Jul 11, 2018.

    Hey guys, i'm here again. Currently i'm working on a novel, and i'm having a hard time getting the answers i need from the internet. A huge portion of the story will focus on life as a criminal, particularly in a very obscure industry: that of the illegal informant. Although i have the opportunity to communicate with the police, i doubt i will be able to further my research, for confedentiality reasons and all that stuff. So what i'm wondering is basically how this whole information-selling system works, i guess? Any inputs would be great, and i apologize if this whole thread is kindof stupid, i have no clue what i'm doing.
     
  2. CerebralEcstasy

    CerebralEcstasy Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2017
    Messages:
    136
    Likes Received:
    255
    Location:
    Earth
    The illegal informant is often someone who is in the midst, if not part of the criminal activity that he or she informs on. He or she may have gained insider knowledge while inside jail, or has gained it word of mouth from others who run in that particular circle. As you probably know, many incarcerated individuals have been brought up on new charges due to their willingness to blab their story to establish credibility within the penal system. There is a hierarchy, from petty thief to murderer, and the newly incarcerated often have to establish where they are in terms of the pecking order.

    There are also disastrous repercussions for some inmates who turn informant, even the appearance of being someone who snitches can cause a person to receive a severe beat down. Often criminals will limit their illegal conduct to known associates in an attempt to reduce the possibility of being caught.

    There is also corruption among some (not all) of the jail guards, and sadly those ones are the ones who will turn a blind eye while someone browses through jail files, to find out who are the 'skinners', 'pedos' and dealers. A jail broke cell phone is worth thousands of dollars inside, so its not uncommon for those earning lower wages to divest of their moral code and provide contraband and information if there's money to be had.

    I once heard the phrase that there is an appearance of control by the outside sources, because they have the lock and key, but in truth, the criminals are the ones who run the system while inside. At first I brushed this thought off, but it did have some merit. Simply because there are more of them, than there are guards. This is often what leads to the brutality, riots etc., as the guards try to show force, so they aren't rushed by a number of inmates.

    I realize some of this is off topic, but hopefully it will drum up some ideas.
     
  3. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Messages:
    2,615
    Likes Received:
    1,744
    Illegal informant? How is an informant illegal? There's nothing illegal about tipping off law enforcement whether you are any sort of official informant or not.
     
  4. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    1,090
    Likes Received:
    1,007
    I thought for sure that TS was talking about white-collar crime, selling trade secrets and private information?
     
  5. Violet_Haze03

    Violet_Haze03 New Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    That is what i was wondering about. My main character is often infiltrating gangs, sneaking into shady clubs, and slipping onto crime scenes to aquire information they would sell to whoever will pay, usually not governmental officials or the police. I know what you are mentioning is very common, but i aim to tackle a topic that often goes un-written. All i can imagine right now is that they would constantly be facing a lot of danger from all angles, both clients and police, and suffer from extreme paranoia because of it. I would also think they would be very, very reluctant to reveal their indentity, and would use a high degree of anonymity. Does that answer your question?
     
  6. Violet_Haze03

    Violet_Haze03 New Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    My internet cut out, so i'm sorry for making that post twice.
     
  7. Alan Aspie

    Alan Aspie Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2018
    Messages:
    518
    Likes Received:
    333
    It does not.

    More than 85% of espionage is so called active measures. it means effecting, not nesting info.

    Getting information happens through networks and cyber space. Humint is not so big thing any more.

    Humint happens by taking a grip from somebody. Money is not a good grip.

    if you wanna know how it works, you could start from cold war and Yuri.

     
  8. Violet_Haze03

    Violet_Haze03 New Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    Ah, thanks for clearing that up. My other plan was instead casting the character as a distributor of drugs on the street, making deliveries to a dealer from an underground operation. Would this be a little more plausible?
     
  9. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2015
    Messages:
    1,090
    Likes Received:
    1,007
    Drugs Inc. is a good documentary on the subject. It’s on Netflix
     
  10. surrealscenes

    surrealscenes Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2017
    Messages:
    366
    Likes Received:
    242
    Location:
    a room made of impossible angles
    If I understand correctly, it is like knowledge of any type. You have it, others figure out you know more, they offer money for it. It really depends on what circles you are a part of. Remember, most criminals stick to one or two avenues of crime, just like most in a career or hobby. You fall into what you know and are comfortable with, and most importantly, what you have time for. Most information of this type is traded for something.

    You can't be anonymous if you are selling info, no one would buy it. Who are you and how do you know? Are you trying to set me up? Are you going to sell me out too?

    This isn't worth the time or money. Most that will sell information like this are 'cashing out' and trying to leave the life. Information is a fleeting thing, it will change tomorrow. That makes you a target if anything is incorrect. It doesn't matter if the buyer sat on it for a month and things went badly when they made a move, it was your information that put them in that place.

    I could see a story like this working in a James Bond type of world that is fast paced, and money and time are not a hinderance.

    Always remember that people have memories and people talk to one another. It becomes a math equation that the seller needs to figure out beforehand and then stay ahead of. Over a short time the noose would begin to tighten.
    X people knew about this. X people knew about that. X people knew this. How many people were in all three places? Probably just one.

    Now, my own experience.
    I was involved in crime for a lot of my life. I did crime by myself as a child, then as a teen. I honed my craft. Eventually I was approached by the right person that was part of a group. I took what I had learned and married it to what I always wanted to do, and got paid well for it. Sound like a dream job? It was and became my second life, but now I pay an emotional price every day, and the money is long gone. I saw people who sold information to the group; they were like the walking dead, they had nothing else to offer for sale, and tended to be horrible at crime.

    If you end up writing this, make sure you figure out how the person gets money while doing the other things they do, and avoids long stretches in prison. Most crime novels or movies make little sense to me, but they are supposed to be entertainment; similar to a writer that watches a movie about a writer that bangs out novels in days and not months or years.
     

Share This Page