Thief in law  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

A thief in law in the Soviet Union, the post-Soviet states and respective diasporas abroad is a specifically granted formal status of a professional criminal who enjoys an elite position within the organized crime environment and employs informal authority over its lower-status members. Each new Vor is vetted (literally "crowned", with respective rituals and tattoos) by consensus of several Vors. Vor culture is inseparable from prison organized crime: only repeatedly jailed convicts are eligible for Vor status. Thieves in law are drawn from many nationalities from a number of post-Soviet states.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Thief in law" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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