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Business Crime - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Business Crime. Definition & Characteristics White Collar (Professional) Crime Why are rates of professional crime so high? Corporate Crime Difficulties studying business crime. Business Crime. Sutherland “..a crime committed by a person of respectability…”

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Presentation Transcript
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Business Crime

  • Definition & Characteristics

  • White Collar (Professional) Crime

  • Why are rates of professional crime so high?

  • Corporate Crime

  • Difficulties studying business crime


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Business Crime

  • Sutherland “..a crime committed by a person of respectability…”

  • Distinction between unethical and illegal


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Characteristics of Business Crime

  • Involves complex, sophisticated and technical actions

  • Tends to be intermingled with legitimate behavior (i.e. false advertising)

  • Victimization is diffuse (i.e. harm caused by pollution)

  • Monetary sums are larger than street crime (avg. of $500,000 in 1980s)


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Characteristics

  • Business crime rarely prosecuted; penalties relatively light (i.e.John MacNamara’s 5 yr. sentence)

  • Not always perceived as crime

  • Lack of media coverage

  • Business criminals not stigmatized (many become celebrities)


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Professional Crimes

  • Definition of Professional

  • Lawyers

  • Accountants

  • Executive/Management

  • Doctors

  • Examples: embezzlement & medical crime


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Embezzlement

  • Theft from a corporation

  • Estimated at $27 billion in U.S., $6 billion Canada

  • Employee access to documentary records

  • Theft over an extended period


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Profile of Embezzlers

  • Nonshareable problem (booze, babes, bets)

  • Recognize & seize opportunity

  • Rationalize using a “vocabulary of motive” (i.e. borrowing not stealing)

  • Examples: Jim Baker’s $3.7 million theft from PTL Ministries


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Physician Crime

  • Dr.Richard Neale

  • Gross Negligence, Fraud & Incompetence


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Why are professional crime rates so high?

  • Victims tend to be impersonal

  • Power imbalances

  • Easy to rationalize

  • Criminal hard to apprehend


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Corporate Crime

  • Consumer as victim

  • Employees as victim

  • Public as victim


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Consumer as Victim

  • The Ford Pinto

  • Tainted Meat

  • Insurance scams


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Employee As Victim

  • Westray Mine


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Westray – May 9, 1992

  • 26 dead

  • Families & survivors



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Public as Victim

  • Environment

  • Public infrastructure


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Why is corporate crime difficult to study?

  • Problem with official statistics

  • Difficult to access information

  • Requires knowledge of different disciplines

  • Research funding lacking