Criminal gangs threaten status of luxury brands

Criminal gangs threaten status of luxury brands

Immigrant gang members like to sport high end, brand-name clothes and watches, but the more these items also become associated with criminals, the more their value drops in the eyes of other societal groups, warns one researcher.

FASHION FEBRUARY 6. 2024 15:58

Rolex watches, as well as clothes and accessories from Gucci, Canada Goose, Louis Vuitton and other prestigious brands, are increasingly popular among criminal gangs with an immigrant background, because the labels enable them to show off that they are making serious money through their criminal endeavours.

However, with the growing prevalence of these branded products showing up on serious criminals, the prestige of these labels among other wealthy groups has taken a blow, the Swedish news portal Samnytt reports.They write, those who buy these luxury brand products are indicating that they have the money to afford it, good taste and belong to an exclusive social class.

However, all this is upended when the products become fashionable even among the worst criminals in society.

„For many people, a brand is a cultural symbol, something that shows their identity and what they stand for. Exclusive brands with large logos can indicate that you are a happy and successful person who can afford to buy the products, Eva Ossiansson, PhD and brand researcher at the Stockholm School of Economics, told the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

When a society like Sweden’s erodes, and big-time criminals are competing with law-abiding, successful citizens for the most money, the prestige of exclusive goods that previously only the latter group could afford erodes.

Department stores and shops selling such branded goods are visibly worried about this development, because in the long term, high-status brands may become low-status brands in the eyes of the majority of society. They risk losing their traditional customers, with only criminals buying from them, who after a while will also realize that the brands have lost their status and opt for others. This can easily lead to bankruptcy.

Refusing to accept cash

Now, some luxury stores are trying to prevent criminals from purchasing from them by refusing to accept cash payment. They turned to this solution recently, after

an assassin, having just executed another criminal, went straight to the luxury department store Nordiska Kompaniet to buy designer clothes with the money he earned for the murder.

How effective this method is at keeping criminals at bay is yet to be seen, but inaction is even worse.

„If certain brands are associated with gangs, crime and drugs, it can lead to your real target audience choosing other brands, because people don’t want others to associate them with crime,” explained Eva Ossiansson.

At the same time, representatives of these manufacturers do not want to talk to the media about the problems. They fear that this would only draw more attention to the phenomenon and further accelerate the depreciation of their products.




clothes, luxury, sweden