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Blue Collar Crime Essay Topics

Blue-Collar Crime

Blue-collar crime is a term given to criminal acts more likely to be committed by citizens of lower social class in society, such as those which inflict direct harm on the person or property of others. This is in contrast to white-collar crime, which is generally committed by citizens of higher social class, who are more likely to be presented with the opportunity to commit such crimes.

"Blue-collar crime" is an informal classification and holds no particular legal weight. For the most part, blue-collar crime entails whatever crimes are most immediately possible for a person to commit, those that are most often spurred by passion rather than those that require careful deliberation. Crimes against the person, crimes against property, and many forms of victimless crime such as prostitution, gambling and drug abuse all tend to be classified as blue-collar crime. Blue-collar crimes are, for the most part, those that cause an immediate and highly visible injury to society, so they're usually punished much more rapidly and severely than white-collar crime. Also, citizens of lower social class cannot generally afford high-quality legal assistance, which means they tend to suffer far more severe punishment than white-collar criminals.

Citizens of higher social class are certainly capable of committing "blue-collar" crimes, and do, all the time. However, the vast majority of these crimes are committed by citizens of lower social class, who in turn have limited opportunities to commit white-collar crimes such as financial fraud and money laundering, which is how these classifications originated.

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Although offenses similar to what is referred to as white-collar crime have been around for centuries, it is likely that white-collar crime will become even more prevalent in the future than it is now or was in the past. Social and technological changes have made white-collar crime opportunities more available to a broader range of people than ever before.


I. Introduction

II. Definition and Costs of White-Collar Crime

III. Characteristics and Techniques of White-Collar Crime

IV. The Problem of Controlling White-Collar Crime

V. Types of White-Collar Crime

VI. Conclusion

VII. Bibliography

I. Introduction

White-collar crime is a generic term that refers to a broad range of illegal acts committed by seemingly respectable people in business settings as part of their occupational roles. There are many different types of white-collar crime, ranging from antitrust offenses to environmental violations to health care frauds and beyond. These types of crime are important because they impose enormous financial, physical, and social harms on individuals, communities, and society in general. Because of their special characteristics and the techniques by which they are committed, they pose significant problems for law enforcement and regulatory agencies interested in controlling them. Evidence suggests that white-collar crime is pervasive, widespread, and growing.

This research paper begins with a brief discussion of the history of the concept of white-collar crime in the discipline of criminology. The nature and extent of the harms imposed by white-collar crime are then detailed. Next, the characteristics and techniques of white-collar offending are described, and the problems that these features create for societal efforts to reduce white-collar crime are outlined. This section is followed by a summary of some of the major forms of white-collar crime. Finally, the research paper concludes by identifying recent social and economic developments that are likely to ensure that white-collar crime will maintain its status as a major social problem well into the future.

Browse criminal justice research papers or view criminal justice research topics.

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