Scorpia (whose name comes from Sabotage, Corruption, Intelligence and Assassination) is an extremely powerful, wealthy and ruthless criminal organization, and serves as the primary antagonist faction of the Alex Rider series.
It started out after the Cold War when spies from world governments saw they would be unemployed, and decided to make their own money. Scorpia was formed by twelve spies - most notable were Zeljan Kurst, Julia Rothman, Winston Yu, and Doctor Three. They were all assassins, and they planned to kill people and bring down governments and elect their own corrupt governments. They also wanted to keep poverty in existence, since "it has its uses".
Their first missions were successful - they set fire to a Russian forest and elected two corrupt governments.
In their early years they recruited assassins Yassen Gregorovich and Nile, and Yassen met the MI6 agent (and later traitor) Ash in the island Malta.
In 2005, Scorpia had planned an operation named Invisible Sword, which, if successful, would give them millions of dollars and make the British and Americans hate each other. They planned in using nanoshells to infect thousands of English children in London and release the poison inside, killing them all at four p.m. on a certain day if the English government did not obey Scorpia's terms. The government did not and Scorpia decided to go ahead and kill the children. But thankfully, Alex Rider had infiltrated Scorpia and managed to defeat them for the first time in their history.
They tried to kill Alex in revenge but he survived and they were again humiliated.
Four months later, Scorpia met again to rise again to power and overcome their last humiliation, and were given a crisis to orchestrate in Australia: to destroy a conference about world peace. Scorpia never wanted the conference to be filmed, and a man named Winston Yu decided to kill them by launching a tsunami from a bomb placed in the seabed in a tectonic plate fault. Thus the disaster would seem totally natural. Again, it was foiled thanks to the Australian intelligence service putting Alex Rider into Scorpia again. Scorpia were now beginning to lose credibility and nobody feared them any more.
The Horseman file
Two operations - both in the Middle East - had been passed off to other organizations instead of Scorpia, and they were beginning to get edgy. But they had planned a long vengeance against Alex Rider, and this was called the "Horseman file" and was a collection of evidence saying MI6 had used a kid in their operations, which was illegal because Alex was only fourteen and too young to do anything independently. So Scorpia had a brilliant plan - they would blackmail the English government into sending back a statue called the Elgin Marbles to Greece, the statues' homeland, if the government did this Scorpia wouldn't reveal the truth that they had used a child illegally.
But if the government refused, they would publicly humiliate them by revealing all the evidence and shooting the American secretary of state (who was against Britain) and making it look as if they had killed her and starting a war. But all this was averted by Alex Rider. They had a scheme to use Julius Grief, a clone of Alex, into making the world think that Julius was Alex when he killed the secretary. But none of this happened and Scorpia were finally made to shut down. They were a laughing stock now and many of their leaders were arrested for life.
Scorpia were a powerful, ruthless and brilliant organization; their headquarters were in London, Venice and Paris, and they had a marvelous idea for a "floating headquarters" in the Paris river. However, some of their members were greedy and foolish, such as Levi Kroll, and an old man named Max Grendel. Max Grendel was notable for suddenly saying he would retire. One never retired from Scorpia. So they killed Grendel with a box of scorpions, saying it was a present.
Scorpia had global contacts, and they got their assignments from billionaire clients, who said they would pay them huge amounts if they killed people or orchestrated disasters. Their only weakness was Alex Rider, because he was a kid, he could survive where adults couldn't, and sneak into places adults couldn't, and be unnoticed. So he was the cause of their downfall in the end.
The organization disbanded in 2007, and their leaders are imprisoned.
- SCORPIA serve as the Big Bads of the entire Alex Rider series, with MI6 being the Bigger Bads.
- What SCORPIA really want, a Third World War, is what makes them so powerful because this stops MI6 and the CIA from simply bombing them as neither organization wants a Third World War to happen and thus SCORPIA can hold them both to ransom with this threat.