Economic and Organized Crime: Challenges for Criminal Justice

1. Introduction

A concern that economic crime is changing and increasing has led to frequent calls for Justice systems around the world to respond with dramatic new investigatory and prosecutorial powers. For example, there have been calls for increased freedom for police in conducting uncover operations, measures to trace and seize the proceeds of crime and laws to make membership in a criminal “organization” a crime per se .

This discussion paper questions the need for such justice innovations. It asks:

  1. How much of crime is profit-driven and what difference does that motivemake? What do profit-driven offenders actually do and what adverse economic effects do their actions actually have?
  2. How clear is the frontier between profit-driven crime and normal economic activity?
  3. How should responsibility for detecting, deterring and dealing with profit- driven crime be shared between the criminal justice system and the regulatory apparatus? What other options are available?
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