Dr. Yuliya Zabyelina

Associate Professor


  • PhD, University of Trento, Italy
  • MA, Jacobs University Bremen, Germany


Dr. Zabyelina’s research covers the study of crime, criminal behavior, and criminal justice systems from a global perspective. She examines how crime and justice are interconnected across national borders, how they are influenced by global forces and trends, and how they impact individuals, communities, and societies on a global scale. Her scholarship is interdisciplinary and draws from the theoretical foundations and methodologies of international law, criminology, and sociology.

Before joining the University of Alabama, Dr. Zabyelina was Associate Professor of International Criminal Justice at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York (CUNY). She has also worked as a consultant for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and taught at George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies and at the International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA).

From April 2021 to 2023, Dr. Zabyelina held the position of Chair for the International Section of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Presently, she serves as the ACJS Alternate Representative to the United Nations. She is a member of the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime (GITOC) and Secretary of the Alliance of NGOs on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice.

Selected Publications


Zabyelina, Y. (2023). Between Immunity and Impunity: External Accountability of Political Elites for Transnational Crime, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Zabyelina, Y., and Thachuk, K. (Eds.) 2022. The Private Sector and Organized Crime: Criminal Entrepreneurship, Illicit Profits, and Private Sector Security Governance. London: Routledge.

Zabyelina, Y., and Van Uhm, D. (Eds.) 2020. Illegal Mining: Organized Crime, Corruption, and Ecocide in a Resource-Scarce World. London and New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Peer-reviewed Journal Articles (Selected)

Zabyelina, Y., 2023. Revisiting Organized Crime through the Disciplinary Lens of Economic Criminology. Journal of Economic Criminology, online first, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jeconc.2023.100017 [Open access]

Zabyelina, Y., 2022. The “Capone Discovery”: Extortion as a Method of Terrorism Financing. Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 45(5–6), pp. 501–516. https://doi.org/10.1080/1057610X.2019.1678860

Zabyelina, Y., 2019. Vigilante Justice and Informal Policing in Post-Euromaidan Ukraine. Post-Soviet Affairs, 35(4), pp. 277–292.  https://doi.org/10.1080/1060586X.2019.1601460

Zabyelina, Y., 2019. Russia’s Night Wolves MC: From 1%ers to Political Activists. Trends in Organized Crime, 22(1), pp. 51–65.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s12117-017-9314-7

Zabyelina, Y., and Kustova, I., 2015. Energy and Conflict: Security Outsourcing in the Protection of Critical Energy Infrastructures. Cooperation and Conflict, 50(4), pp. 531–549.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0010836714558640

Zabyelina, Y., 2015. Reverse Money Laundering in Russia: Clean Cash for Dirty Ends. The Journal of Money Laundering Control, 18(2), pp. 202–219. http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/JMLC-10-2014-0039

Book Chapters (Selected)

Zabyelina, Y. “The Harms and Crimes of Mining.” In H.N. Pontell, Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Oxford: Oxford University Press (forthcoming in October 2023)

Zabyelina, Y., and Hoang, T. (2022). Trafficking in Persons and the Hotel Industry. In Y. Zabyelina and K. Thachuk (eds.), The Private Sector and Organized Crime: Criminal Entrepreneurship, Illicit Profits, and Private Sector Security Governance (pp. 102–117). London and New York: Routledge.

Zabyelina, Y. 2021. Politicization of Motorcycle Clubs: Russia’s Night Wolves Motorcycle Club. In M. Lauchs and A. Bain (eds.), Understanding the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs: International Perspectives (Vol. II) (pp. 95-116). Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.

Zabyelina, Y. 2019. The Role of Major Intergovernmental Organizations and International Agencies in Combating Transnational Crime. In M. Natarajan (ed.), International and Transnational Crime and Justice, 2nd edn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Zabyelina, Y. 2019. The Application of the Non-Punishment Principle to Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States. In J.A. Winterdyk and J. Jones (eds.), Palgrave International Major Reference Work on Human Trafficking. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-63192-9_103-1

Zabyelina, Y. 2018. The Industry of Terror in the Caucasian Emirate: Between Zakat and Extortion Racket. In K. Thachuk and R. Lal (eds.), Terrorist Criminal Enterprises: Financing Terrorism through Organized Crime. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO/Praeger.

Reports (Selected)

Zabyelina, Y., et al. (2022). Responding to Illegal Mining and Trafficking in Metals and Minerals: A Guide to Good Legislative Practices. Vienna: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Zabyelina, Y, et al. 2022. Western Hemisphere Anticorruption Index 2021. New York, NY: John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY.

Zabyelina, Y. et al. 2020. Toolkit on Stakeholder Engagement: Implementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. Vienna: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.