The European Union’s crime agency, Europol, has launched a campaign showing its “most wanted” women, accused or convicted of serious and organised crimes; among the “most wanted” is also Kristi Amberg, a young lady from Estonia.
In May 2018, Amberg was sentenced to a year and nine months in prison for trafficking large quantities of drugs that were acquired through a vast network of dealers. From July to September 2017, the network bought and sold 10 to 15 grams of amphetamines every two days, one to 10 grams cocaine and 50 ml of GHB every week.
However, the sentence was suspended on the condition that Amberg didn’t commit another crime for at least three years and met regularly with her probation officer. She had to have a fixed residential address and, to spend longer than 15 days away from the address or travel abroad, Amberg had to ask for permission from the probation officer. She violated the rules, however, and was subsequently declared a fugitive. Amberg has been on the run ever since and her whereabouts are unknown.
Europol highlighted 18 women in its “Crime Has No Gender” fugitive list, published in a dedicated webpage, and said that “women were just as capable as men of carrying out serious crimes” – although statistics show that globally, the majority of crimes are committed by men. On the webpage, each person’s gender is left ambiguous until their mask is removed.
“We wanted to show that women are just as likely to commit violent crimes as men. Even though the discourse is often around ‘male fugitives’, women can be just as bad,” Claire Georges, a spokeswoman for Europol, told BBC. She said the agency asked EU member states to submit their most wanted female fugitives. Three states – the UK, Cyprus and Luxembourg – still sent men instead, however.
Cover: Kristi Amberg (Europol).