White Collar Crimes in the US, Free Essay for Everyone

Published: 2022-03-11
White Collar Crimes in the US, Free Essay for Everyone
Type of paper:  Term paper
Categories:  Criminal law
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1898 words
16 min read

Throughout the history, there has been the existence of many white collar crimes. A white collar crime can be termed as a non-violent and finance-based crime that has full ranges of crimes that are committed by government and business professional. Mostly, white collar crimes are neither victimless nor unnoticed. One white-collar crime is capable of destroying a company that can lead to loss of investors as well as a lot of money. Today, US fraud schemes have proved to be more sophisticated than they have been before. White collar crimes have become more prevalent in the US than ever before, probably due to the rapid technological growths. The FBI has been on the frontline trying to fight such types of crimes. Well, they have succeeded in solving some white collar crime cases but have not yet managed to prevent the same. The paper looks at the White Collar crimes in the United States, the Trends of the said crimes along with the future of them.

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In 1939, Edwin Sunderland who was a criminologist used the term white-collar crime. He related the word to several non-violent crimes that are mainly committed in commercial places for financial interests and gains (Gottschalk, 2011). According to him, the relationships and situations within any company are the ones that have created an environment that encourages white collar crime. He believed that white collar crime cannot be described as an individual level thus needs to be looked at an organizational level. A typical white collar offender is a middle-aged, trusted employee who is educated and seen as an outstanding citizen. The justice department has defined white-collar crime as a very illegal act whose characterization is deceit, violation, and concealment of trust that does not depend on violence or threats. However, there exist a plethora of opinions on the definition of white collar crimes. The definitions which have been offered by different legal scholars vary across and within linguistic and discipline practices. The black's law dictionary says that a white collar is a silent crime without violence and that which involves cheating in commercial matters. According to the Oxford dictionary, it is described as a person who ends up taking advantage of his or her special knowledge/ responsibility to commit financial crimes. Well, as much as all the above definitions are not similar, they are all revolving around the same point of non-violent financial crimes (Slyke, et.al, 2016).

Well, there exists a common misconception that white collar crimes are victimless thus are not dangerous, however as much as this crime is committed without weapon use or physical violence, they are harmless. According to a research carried out by the FBI, in the US white collar crimes can squander more than $ 300 billion annually(Gottschalk, 2011).Therefore, white collar crimes have been present in the US for a long time now, and the idea of these crimes have remained ambiguous to some. Law practitioners and lawyers have continued with their disputes in the matter of the scope and grounds for white collar crimes.

There exists various white collar crimes and which include are several types of frauds, violations, anti-trust, and insider trading. Although most white collar crimes vary, most of them share similar characteristics. To start with, all of them involve concealment instead of any violence application with the aim of gaining money illegally (Ryder, 2016). A defendant who can be convicted for making false statements for him to get a government contract is considered a white-collar crime. All White collar crimes entail position abuse, trust and power misuse. Any public official who solicit and take bribes, and corporate officials who fix prices with the aim of driving competitors away also engage in abuse of those positions. White collar crimes are often hard to detect as compared to other types of crimes because its losses cannot be noted immediately by victims since they involve complex schemes.

In today's judicial systems, the most common punishments given to offenders of white collar crimes is inclusive of house arrest, financial penalties, fines, jail sentences not exceeding thirty years. The sentence of economic offenders can be same or more as compared to violent street crime(Ryder, 2016). The sentencing guidelines are applied by computing the loss or effects caused by the fraudulent acts. Regardless of the prevalent development of the white collar crimes concept, no agreement has been reached about the criminology theories that try to explain white collar crimes. White collar crime defendants being people who hold high positions in certain organizations or the government mainly go free due to corruption and intimidation. Therefore, the US government needs first to curb corruption cases in the legal systems to allow fair prosecution of the white collar crime offenders.

White collar crimes are largely motivated by social, macroeconomic, or organizational factors like fear to fail in a competitive society which is very capitalist. White collar crimes are also encouraged by excessive marketplace regulation that leaves the remedy to be excessive capitalism. From the above vantage point, the white collar criminals circumvent the law in pursuit of large profits which serve their individual need and not for nefarious purposes. These crimes do not occur in a single day (Simpson, 2013). They largely involve dark deals, logical deceit planning, beguiled misrepresentation to the innocent stakeholders, and also keeping secrets from both the internal and external regulatory bodies. The act of committing a normal crime can be a sporadic and desperate attempt, but the white collar crime requires men of high intellectual stature, both professionally and socially, and must have a good command of resources at hand.

With the immense evolution of internet technologies, there has been a rapid growth of fraud schemes which originate from the internet. A good example of this is the online investment scheme which is can be classified as a recent form of fraud. The commission on exchange and securities on law enforcement and trials shows that there are two primary methods used by criminals to manipulate securities in the market for individual gain. To start with the 'Pump & Dump' projects that disseminate misleading or untrue information with the aim of causing sharp rises in the stock prices that are not in demand, or shares belonging to companies that have no leafing operations or substantial assets (Slyke, et.al, 2016). After causing sharp prices, the individuals concerned sell their shares and end up getting substantial profits before the fall of prices back to the normal level. When this happens, all the other stock buyers are not aware of the falsity of that information thus end up becoming victims of the particular scheme when the prices fall.

An example of this is a case in Los Angeles, in a federal prosecution, the defendants made a purchase of shares in NEI Webworld, Inc, which was a bankrupt company. The shares bought were amounting to $130,000, and they were bought directly by use of an intermediary. Several months before this, the assets belonging to NEI Webworld Company had been liquidated. The defendants managed to send email messages to very many internet bulletin boards, stating that a wireless telecommunication organization had planned the NEI Webworld buyout. When the defendants were making shares purchases, the prices of the shares were ranging from 9-13 cents per piece(Levi, 2013). Amazingly, in a day, actually in 45 minutes, the NEI Webworld share price rose from $8 per piece to $15.5-16, and thirty minutes later, the price fell to twenty-five cents per piece. In that small period, the defendants managed to make $ 362,625. Another example is a federal case where an employee of California Company PairGain Technologies, made a fake website to spread the fake news about an impending acquisition of PairGain Technologies by an Israel company. The employees sent fraudulent mail messages with the link to the fake website (Levi, 2013). During that day, the PairGain company shares rose to with a 30% increase prior to the issuing of a refuting press release by the company. Also, in San Diego, there was a federal prosecution of immense fraud by use of telemarketing and internet to attract potential investors in general partnerships that involve high technology investments. The fraud scheme affected more than three thousand victims national wide and the amount gained was fifty million dollars.

As much as the white collar crimes continue to cause huge losses annually in the US, the future of this crime type has got two directions; the way the crime is combated and the way the same is carried out. Looking at it from a legal context, the white collar crime methods have evolved and thus will always provide new cases and scenarios that are capable of changing the written law. The paper in this section provides different types of white collar crimes and how they can change with the current evolution of new technologies. It also provides solutions on how the FBI and the government can use the technological advancements to curb white collar crimes.

To start with money laundering where a person transfers money by use of different illegal means like embezzlement, racketeering or drug transaction. The aim of this is to make it appear legitimate. It is among the most vulnerable points of any organizations. Well, it may be difficult to analyze future methods but looking at the current method one can predict the future. An example of this is where an employee has been converted by terrorists. The employee may take money from the organization to accounts that appear legit, but in the real sense, the money is fueling terrorist activities (Simpson, 2013). The employee may use the IP blocking technique and digital encryption to get an account and send money to other accounts and manage to get from the company before an unfamiliar activity is realized. Therefore, employees ought to carry out a background check on their potential employees. Well, with the most recent innovations, it is easy to track data quickly. Today, activity monitoring on a network is easier than it has been in the past. Therefore, any company needs a dedicated team and evolving monitoring software to reduce money laundering.

Identity theft is among the most prevalent and attacked crimes in the US. The law enforcement agencies need to develop strong technology that can combat identity theft faster as compared to the rate at which criminals are developing new ways to fake people's identities. There are many ways in which several people lose their identities annually; online companies failure to keep Personal Identifiable Information safe, dumpster diving and normal theft. In the world today, there are scientists who are close to developing a program that can piece together shredded information digitally. The above technique will provide information that one never disclosed but shredded. Most people shred sensitive documents that may contain information like the social security number, their ID numbers or credit card numbers. The techniques may help criminals of identity theft since it will make things easier for them to steal an individual's identity (Simpson, 2013). While the above-discussed innovation may help criminals there also exist many more people who are aware of the prevalent problem of identity theft. The people include banks, federal trade commission, and credit card companies. The credit card companies have invested a lot in protecting PII. Like for example, of Capital One was not in a position to endure that their customer's information is secure, they would lose a notable business amount. With the current development of the digital age, many people end u...

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