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Chapter 8 Criminal Law and Cyber Crimes PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Chapter 8 Criminal Law and Cyber Crimes. §1: Civil vs. Criminal Law. Major differences:. §2: Classification of Crimes. An act can have both civil and criminal consequences. (O.J. Simpson trials). §3: Essentials of Criminal Liability. To be convicted of a crime, a person must:

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Chapter 8 Criminal Law and Cyber Crimes

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Chapter 8 criminal law and cyber crimes l.jpg

Chapter 8Criminal Law and Cyber Crimes

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§1: Civil vs. Criminal Law

Major differences:

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§2: Classification of Crimes

  • An act can have both civil and criminal consequences. (O.J. Simpson trials)

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§3: Essentials of Criminal Liability

To be convicted of a crime, a person must:

  • Commit a guilty act (actus reus).

  • Have the guilty mind (mens rea) during commission of the guilty act.

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§4: Corporate Criminal Liability

  • A corporation is creature of state statute.

  • A corporate entity may be convicted of a crime.

  • Punishment would be fines and/or denial of certain legal privileges.

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Corporate Criminal Liability [2]

  • Corporations may be convicted of criminal activity if:

    • Crime is within agent/employee’s scope of employment;

    • Corporation fails to perform a legally required duty; or

    • Crime authorized or requested by corporate principal/officer.

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Liability of Corporate Officers

  • Corporate officers and directors are personally liable for crimes they commit.

  • Also, they may be criminally liable for acts of their under the “Responsible Corporate Officer” doctrine.

  • U.S. v. Park (1975).

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§5: Types of Crimes

  • Violent Crimes.

    • Murder, sexual assault, rape, robbery.

  • Property Crimes.

    • Burglary, larceny, theft of trade secrets, theft of services, arson, receipt of stolen goods, forgery.

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“White Collar” Crimes

Crimes occurring in the business context using non-violent means to obtain personal or business advantage.

  • Embezzlement.

  • Mail or Wire Fraud (federal).

  • Bribery.

  • Bankruptcy Fraud (federal).

  • Insider Trading (federal).

  • Theft of Trade Secrets (federal).

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Organized Crime

Operates illegitimately by providing illegal goods and services:

  • Money Laundering.

  • RICO(criminal and civil liability).

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§6: Defenses to Criminal Liability

  • Infancy (juvenile).

  • Involuntary Intoxication: is a defense if person was incapable of understanding act.

  • Insanity: defendant lacked substantial capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of act or to conform act to law.

  • Mistake.

  • Duress.

  • Consent.

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Defenses [2]

  • Self-Defense of People and Property: use deadly force if reasonable belief of immanent death or serious injury; cannot use deadly force to protect property alone.

  • Necessity: criminal act necessary to prevent greater harm.

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Defenses [3]

  • Entrapment: prevents government from encouraging crimes. Key issue: was the defendant pre-disposed to commit the act?

  • Statute of Limitations.

  • Immunity.

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§7: Criminal Procedures

  • U.S. Constitution provides specific safeguards for those accused of crimes at federal and state level.

  • Criminal procedures are designed to protect against the arbitrary use of power by the government.

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Criminal Process



Initial Appear





Guilty Plea

Plea Bargain

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The “Miranda” Rule

  • Miranda v. Arizonain 1966 required police to inform suspects of their constitutional rights.

  • The Supreme Court upheld Miranda in Dickerson v. U.S.(2000).

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Fourth Amendment

  • The Fourth Amendment protects against unreasonable search and seizures.

  • No warrant for search or arrest can issue without probable cause.

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Exclusionary Rule

  • Evidence obtained in violation of Constitutional amendments is excluded from trial.

  • Deter police from warrantless searches, seizures and misconduct.

  • “Inevitability” and “good faith” are exceptions to the rule.

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Fifth Amendment

  • The Fifth Amendment requires that no one can be denied life, liberty or property with “due process.”

  • Prohibits “double jeopardy” (tried twice for same crime).

  • Prohibits self-incrimination.

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Sixth Amendment

The Sixth Amendment guarantees the accused the rights to:

  • A speedy trial.

  • A trial by jury for criminal cases.

  • Confront his witnesses (cross-examination).

  • Counsel paid by state.

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§8: Cyber Crime

  • Cyber crimes involve the use of computers in cyberspace to injure a person or property.

  • Most cyber crimes are based on existing common law crimes, with exceptions:

    • Identity Theft

    • Cyber Stalking

    • Hacking

    • Cyber Terrorism

  • Computer Fraud and Abuse Act helps prosecute computer crime.

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Case 8.1: US v. Hanousek(Liability of Corporate Officers & Directors)

  • FACTS:

    • Hanousek was responsible for an Alaskan railroad. One of his employees using a backhoe punctured the pipeline discharging 1,000 to 5,000 gallons of oil into a river.

    • Hanousek was convicted of criminal provisions of the Clean Water Act. Hanousek appealed, arguing that the statute under which he was convicted violated his right to due process.

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Case 8.1: US v. Hanousek(Liability of Corporate Officers & Directors)


    • The Clean Water Act is public welfare legislation, which “is designed to protect the public from potentially harmful or injurious items and may render criminal a type of conduct that a reasonable person should know is subject to stringent public regulation.”

    • Hanousek knew about the pipe­line and the danger that a puncture would pose. “Therefore, Hanousek should have been alerted to the probability of strict regulation.”

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Case 8.2: Miranda v. Arizona(Criminal Procedure)

  • FACTS:

    • Miranda was arrested for kidnapping and raping an eighteen-year-old girl near Phoenix, Arizona.

    • During the police interrogation Miranda, who was not informed of his right to remain silent or his right to counsel, confessed to the crime.

    • The confession was introduced at trial, and Miranda was convicted. Miranda appealed, claiming that he had not been informed of his constitutional rights.

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Case 8.2: Miranda v. Arizona(Criminal Procedure)


    • The US Supreme Court ruled the confession was inadmissible as evidence.

    • As a prerequisite to the admissibility of any statement made by a defendant, the defendant must be informed, before a police interrogation, of certain constitutional rights.

    • These are: (1) that he or she has a right to remain silent, (2) that anything said can and will be used against the individual in court, (3) that he or she has the right to have an attorney present during questioning, and (4) that if the individual cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed. If the accused waives his or her rights to remain silent and to have counsel present, the government must be able to demonstrate that the waiver was done knowingly and intelligently.

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Case 8.3: U.S. v. Middleton(Computer Crime)

  • FACTS:

    • Middleton, a disgruntled former employee of, changed all the passwords, altered the computer’s registry, and deleted the entire billing system and two internal databases.

    • spent more than 150 man-hours, and bought new software

    • Middleton was convicted under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). He appealed, arguing that the term individual, as used in the statute’s definition of damage, did not include a corporation.

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Case 8.3: U.S. v. Middleton(Computer Crime)


    • The Ninth Circuit held the term individual in the CFAA included a corporation and affirmed Middleton’s conviction.

    • Iif Congress intended to limit the definition of the crime to conduct causing financial damage to a natural person only, its report would not use the example of a ‘system administrator’ *  *  * as illustrative of the ‘damage’ to be prevented and criminalized.” The report also noted the widespread business use of computers.

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