Indian Criminologist Snehil Dhall on his journey to become Crime Data Scientist

Ethics comes first. Criminologist Snehil Dhall says he has refused millions for not defending criminals as he takes cases of only victims.

Rita boulos chahwan

At first it is very difficult to accept that a Criminologist does exist having a business model in the industry of crime & criminology, but Snehil Dhall proves its mark. How can a scientist acquire his deep thoughts concerning humanity, at the same time manage his knowledge to transform his own concepts into a social entrepreneurship experience is what we wonder. But Snehil Dhall, an Indian Criminologist, merged the philosophies of both the Eastern & Western worlds to form Crimeophobia, which is a Criminology company now entering its 10th year after 9 successful years. The company was first launched in London in 2011 and has now moved to Mumbai, which is the hometown of Criminologist Snehil Dhall.

The core aspect of the company is to accept only victim cases and empower them with knowledge so that crime doesn’t scare them anymore. The company organically keeps restructuring with continuing efforts to develop expertise and improve service quality in the core business areas Legal Services of Audit & Assurance, Risk Advisory, Consulting, Predictive Analytics & Security Advisory, Political & Homeland Advisory services. Crimeophobia aims to acquire and communicate the latest insights concerning major industries and government sectors to promote innovations for the resolution of criminal, social and other problems from a perspective that transcends across all segments facing situations of crime or conflict.


Working with Criminal minds is a passion

Working with Criminal minds is a passion for Snehil but why would someone work and build a career with criminal minds, accepting all the complications that would result is what people would want to understand. For Snehil it became a lifestyle that goes back to his early years in this field is what he said during the e-conversation. “It’s always said that work begins from home and that’s what happened with me. A transition in financial status of my parents brought together many jealous people, especially inside among a few sets of cousins. At times people used emotional blackmailing tactics to extort from my parents which resulted into criminal conspiracies and violence of all kinds because details were linked to outsiders when funds were not given to cousins.”

It wasn’t an easy path to achieve this result of forming a Criminology firm has he had to fight with people inside and out. When he was young he felt helpless with these issues but it turned out to become a challenge so he started studying their minds. At age thirteen, he initiated evaluations of criminal conspiracies in which his parents were wrongly framed. He states “My experience in dealing with the courts, police, politicians, lawyers, media (and even goons) started as early as age fourteen and that was my turning point in being interested enough to begin to study criminal minds. It was, of course, complicated during these early years of my life, but now it is more like a way of living in which I trace the patterns and sequence of the criminal mind.” 

From his complicated routine he transforms the lives of his clients and students by trying to treat them like friends and make a bigger family. He understands their problems by dealing with it by putting himself “within their shoes”. Snehil states that “My thoughts are always aimed at believing that what I have faced shouldn’t be experienced by others. I often don’t just solve the crime as I feel it’s equally important to understand what they consider as justice should be delivered. Solving crime is very subjective so I try to focus also on understanding what justice is for each individual and concentrate on that because every case has its own story”. There is no routine in his daily life and that is why Snehil acts on each situation without pressure in which he refuses to generalise any act as for Snehil there is no definition to an individual’s mind.


What Crimeophobia does is not psychology

What Crimeophobia does is not just psychology but also it’s the science of experience that he consider helps him as he has been in the field of resolving conflicts in more than 70 different professional sectors. Along with the qualification of an Honours degree in Criminology from the UK, he says “As a Criminologist, we define what crime is and eventually, only after defining crime, the formation of law takes place”. He further adds that the meaning of crime is based on what people think and do with their minds when committing crime and every criminal is usually aware of activities which may be outside the law. If there is no law then no one can be punished! Therefore training Police and Defence is of prime importance which he has been doing in regular occasions. The fundamental rule of legal systems worldwide is that a law has to be on the statute books that also have the punishment stated therein; if there is no law then no punishment can be issued.

When such things happen then we have to keep defining crime so that judges can consider and accept the activities as crime so that they punish accordingly. Only judges have the instant rights and powers to consider an activity as criminal and make that into law, but they don’t have the powers to decide alone. The power to decide which activity is crime is with police, defence, lawyers and experts like Snehil Dhall to explain to the court so that they can publish accordingly. However, the importance of the Criminologist hasn’t been properly established yet since that would lead to privatisation of investigation to some extent but the evaluation reports for evidence is permissible in court under Subject Expert category worldwide.


Currently every nation has its own laws and loopholes that are very well known to criminals, due to which a new law has been introduced by the United Nations called ‘Transnational Organised Crime.’ Being one of the very few experts in the topic, Snehil is working on its implementation in India, whereas, the signatories of this law are from many other countries for whom Snehil is also ready to support. The three core activities to be controlled under this organised crime are Money Laundering, Human Trafficking of Women & Children and Arms & Ammunition Smuggling. It is very difficult to convince people about Organised Crime because criminals keep finding different ways to commit the crime which are usually white-collar in nature in public view. Such situations makes it very subjective for stakeholders of legal industry due to which Snehil keeps making strategies to be used when it matters the most for various organisations although many do not like to be proactive.


Only victims are allowed to work with Crimeophobia

His personality is more flexible with his students as well who come from different backgrounds and very vast fields. All of his activities of training and courses are based on the interest, requirements and expectations of the student & professional learners based upon their background. Crime is faced by people of every background so it is important for him to understand what they want rather than enforce what he wants to teach them through a fix curriculum due to which all his trainings are customised. He also provides criminological trainings in Anti-Terrorism, National Security, Crime Rehabilitation and also been Speaker of opening session for India’s highest level conference for Security Forces.

Living a whole life within this ambiance has affected his personality, family & friends too. He says “It always feels I am intimidating them with my presence although it isn’t his intention to do so. I was repeatedly asked to show some empathy and work on my soft skills because people start to feel threatened, even though they have done wrong.” It is always said that most criminals and wrong doers are always afraid of ethical people because they could make mistakes but always attempt not to do anything wrong. In the lines of having soft skills, Snehil did try to be lower his guards by being much softer and also created an animated cartoon character for the company but eventually started feeling depress which he doesn’t shy away in admitting. However, compromising for others comfort caught him in middle of his personal discomfort due to which he again explored himself.

Currently, he doesn’t care if others feel afraid and go on record to give any example of how he deals with it by saying “I have given written replies stating that only criminals need be afraid of my work, and they should be afraid too; in a few cases opponents/criminals have actually made complaints of feeling afraid of my documentations. It is extremely important to maintain ethics because everyone wants people like us to compromise”. Snehil doesn’t work with criminals while working on severe cases since the main reason is related to strict principles on taking only victim cases for maintaining his positive attitude.

For him, every activity that he does for solving crime is basically providing defensive tools that only protect the victims. In the course of defending the victims there are acts done occasionally which could be considered wrong, however, it is very subjective to comment on what is right and wrong when you have to save hundred people against one person.” Over the years there were situations in a few cases where people pretended to be victims to whom he has said no, even though they offered millions. Currently, most people have already understood the values of Crimeophobia such that cases of criminals have stopped coming and he continues to maintain taking on only cases of victims. Acts of self-defence are particularly the kind of cases he gets the most.

In every case he makes the client sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) in which he protects the interest of himself and the client. “I strictly do not start the work without an Authority Letter having the NDA clause mentioned in it by which most of the clients feel secure” states Snehil. Furthermore, to ensure second level of safety for all his criminological techniques and client he made the company policy of not having any full-time salaried staff as this reduces the risk of information being leaked. Nevertheless, he has a team of more than 5000 members globally in various professional industries that work in multiple jurisdiction and expertise.

Upon understanding how does Snehil adapt his personality while dealing with different types social and financial background people, he said “I have maintained one kind of behaviour which is operational for all kinds of people. This helps me not to act differently with my personal attitude. However, my behaviour does change with the tone & language for each of the protocols of every industry, as their protocols should be respected.” He handles a lot of cases linked to socio-economical problems owing to his expertise in handling Organised Crime. Most of these kinds of problems are contributors to the economy, for example, in a financial fraud case of any company listed with the stock market could crash within seconds if a crime is reported against it. Similarly, many other crimes are also linked to some or other aspect of economy as he works on his expertise in the field of Transnational Organised Crime that primarily deals with Money Laundering cases.

Although every activity done by Snehil is of Legal Industry but he still manages to maintain the difference between his Criminology Firm from other Law Firms. He says “We first evaluate the psychology behind the crime and criminal and then supports it with evidence. We are not the implementers of law or justice, but more like a diagnostic medical centre which provides only a Medical Report, which in our case is a Crime Report. Just like it is up to the patient to choose which doctor they wish to visit or go to for a surgery, we provide a Crime Evaluation Report based on Neurocriminology. Thereafter it is up to the client to decide if they wish to meet lawyers, police, court, politicians, media or any other stakeholders of the legal profession for processing the report.” The work which we handle is more like a pandemic which isn’t accepted until its face, however, the fact remains the same that Pandemic of medical industry is just like Organised Crime of legal industry.


About Rita Chahwan

ريتا بولس شهوان، صحافية وباحثة صدر لها عدد من الكتب منها "الكويت وإرادة الاستقلال في الوثائق العثمانية" و "ماذا فعل مدحت باشا في الخليج"(ذات السلاسل) وعملت في عدد من الصحف والمواقع الالكترونية العربية. تلقت تدريبات دولية على الاستقصاء وتخصصت في الاستقصاء الاجتماعي – الاقتصادي كما تولي اهمية كبيرة للشأن السياسي.

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