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Article
Publication date: 25 October 2021

Kylie S. Reale, Eric Beauregard and Julien Chopin

Serial offenders have been described as more forensically aware, better able to control their victim, and ultimately, more adept at eluding detection. Despite these…

Abstract

Purpose

Serial offenders have been described as more forensically aware, better able to control their victim, and ultimately, more adept at eluding detection. Despite these assertions, there is a lack of research examining differences in “criminal expertise” (i.e. offense-related skills and competencies) between serial and non-serial offenders. The purpose of the current study is to address this empirical research gap.

Design/methodology/approach

The current study uses binary logistic regression to examine a sample of 83 serial offenses and 322 offenses involving “novices” (i.e. offenders without a previous criminal history) to determine whether criminal expertise is a distinctive feature of the crime-commission process of serial offenders, compared to novices.

Findings

Binary logistic regression findings indicated that offenders who did not verbally reassure their victim, who brought a weapon to the offense and who selected a victim who was walking were more likely to be serial. Taken together, these behaviors do not suggest that serial offenders are “experts” at avoiding detection, but rather, indicate some general offense competencies and skills related to violent offending.

Originality/value

The current study offers the first direct application of the criminal expertise framework to serial sexual offending. The findings offer new insights for the treatment and management of offenders who possess offense-related competencies and skills, which can offer a complementary view to more deficit-based models.

Details

Journal of Criminal Psychology, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2009-3829

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Article
Publication date: 18 June 2021

Deen Kemsley, Sean A. Kemsley and Frank T. Morgan

This paper aims to define the fundamental nexus between income tax evasion and money laundering. The G7 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) designates tax evasion as a…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to define the fundamental nexus between income tax evasion and money laundering. The G7 Financial Action Task Force (FATF) designates tax evasion as a predicate offense for money laundering. We determine whether this designation is complete from a conceptual standpoint, or whether there is a stronger connection between tax evasion and money laundering.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper applies the FATF definition for money laundering – as well as generally accepted definitions for tax evasion and for a standard predicate offense – to identify the necessary conditions for each crime. This paper then uses these conditions to test opposing hypotheses regarding the nexus between tax evasion and money laundering.

Findings

This paper demonstrates that tax evasion does not meet the conditions for a standard predicate offense, and treating it as if it were a standard predicate could be problematic in practice. Instead, it is concluded that the FATF’s predicate label for tax evasion, together with tax evasion methods and objectives, imply that all tax evasion constitutes money laundering. In a single process, tax evasion generates both criminal tax savings and launders those criminal proceeds by concealing or disguising their unlawful origin.

Practical implications

The FATF could strengthen its framework by explicitly defining all tax evasion as money laundering. This would enable regulatory agencies to draw upon the full combined resources dedicated to either offense.

Originality/value

The analysis demonstrates that tax evasion completely incorporates money laundering as currently defined by the FATF.

Details

Journal of Financial Crime, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-0790

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Book part
Publication date: 28 May 2021

Alina Korn

Purpose: This study is concerned with media representation of crime in the Israeli press. It examines the pattern of offenses reported in two daily newspapers of seemingly…

Abstract

Purpose: This study is concerned with media representation of crime in the Israeli press. It examines the pattern of offenses reported in two daily newspapers of seemingly different characteristics, the “elitist” Haaretz and the “popular” Israel Hayom. Methodology/approach: Crime reports appeared in the news pages during November 2016 were content analyzed in both newspapers by using a coding scheme, which operationalized several variables relating to type of crime, characteristics of offenders and victims, and court proceedings. Findings: Violent and sex offenses featured disproportionately in the news reports in both newspapers, while conventional property offenses were under-reported relative to their prevalence in official crime statistics. In terms of the characteristics of offenders and victims, the vast majority of offenders portrayed in crime stories were adult Jewish males. Women were more likely to appear as victims of crime rather than perpetrators, and more likely to appear as victims of sex offenses rather than other offenses. Research limitations: This study was based on an analysis of crime stories which appeared in two newspapers during one-month period of time. Future research should extend the sample size and collect data from a longer period of time and from additional media outlets. Originality/value: Media coverage of crime stories has not yet been researched in Israel. Beyond the interest in the Israeli case or the potential contribution to comparative global knowledge, the value of the study may lie in expanding the lens of scholarship of media’s construction of crime.

Details

Mass Mediated Representations of Crime and Criminality
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-759-3

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2021

Lewis Chezan Bande

The purpose of this paper is to critically appraise the legal definition of the offence of money laundering under Malawian law. The goal is to evaluate whether the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to critically appraise the legal definition of the offence of money laundering under Malawian law. The goal is to evaluate whether the definition meets international standards and best practices on legal definition of money laundering, particularly as contained in the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNCATOC).

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is a doctrinal analysis of the legal definition of the offence of money laundering under Malawian law. It examines the constituent elements of the offence based on the traditional conception of a criminal offence as constituting the prohibited conduct (or actus reus) and the mental element (or mens rea). The paper comparatively evaluates the offence vis-à-vis international standards and best practices, particularly as contained in the UNCATOC.

Findings

The paper concludes that the definition is compliant with international standards and best practices.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is based on the statutory definition of the offence, but was unable to examine how the offence is interpreted and applied in concrete cases by Malawian courts. The reason is the lack of any case law through which courts have interpreted and applied the offence.

Practical implications

The paper provides the template for future interpretation and application of the offence by courts in the future.

Social implications

Enhancing the clarity and certainty in the law on money laundering in Malawi.

Originality/value

The paper is an elucidation of a statutory provision that was recently adopted in Malawi and for which there is no authoritative clarification. The paper, therefore, makes an invaluable contribution to the fight against money laundering in Malawi by being a guide to law enforcers, lawyers, courts and policy/legislative makers.

Details

Journal of Money Laundering Control, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-5201

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Book part
Publication date: 6 November 2018

Heather Schoenfeld, Rachel M. Durso and Kat Albrecht

Criminal law has dramatically expanded since the 1970s. Despite popular and academic attention to overcriminalization in the United States, empirical research on how court…

Abstract

Criminal law has dramatically expanded since the 1970s. Despite popular and academic attention to overcriminalization in the United States, empirical research on how court actors and, in particular, prosecutors, use the legal tools associated with overcriminalization is scarce. In this chapter, we describe three forms of overcriminalization that, in theory, have created new tools for prosecutors: the criminalization of new behaviors, mandatory minimum sentencing statutes, and the internal expansion of criminal laws. We then use a unique dataset of felony filings and dispositions in Florida from 1995 to 2015 to test a series of hypotheses examining how overcriminalization influences prosecutorial practices given three changes to the political economy during this time: the decline in violent and property crime, the Great Recession, and a growing call for criminal justice reform. We find that prosecutors have been unconstrained by declining crime rates. Yet, rather than rely on new criminal statutes or mandatory minimum sentence laws, they maintained their caseloads by increasing their filing rates for traditional violent, property and drug offenses. At the same time, the data demonstrate nonviolent other offenses are the top charge in almost 20% of the felony caseload between 2005 and 2015. Our findings also suggest that, despite reform rhetoric, filing and conviction rates decreased due to the Recession, not changes in the law. We discuss the implications of these findings for criminal justice reform.

Details

After Imprisonment
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78769-270-1

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Book part
Publication date: 23 November 2012

Rebecca Bondü and Herbert Scheithauer

Purpose – The consumption of violent media contents has been discussed as a risk factor for school shootings repeatedly. The results of research on U.S.-American offenders…

Abstract

Purpose – The consumption of violent media contents has been discussed as a risk factor for school shootings repeatedly. The results of research on U.S.-American offenders support this notion. However, to date only little is known about the extent to which these findings may be transferred and generalized to perpetrators from other countries.

Method – We analyzed the case files on seven school shootings perpetrated in Germany between 1999 and 2006.

Findings – In five cases, detailed qualitative content analyses revealed a marked interest in media violence during the years prior to the offense. In some cases, the media consumption slowly replaced other leisure activities, focussed on topics related to the offenses as killing sprees or former school shootings, and was partly described as being addictive. One offender even utilized the media for his own purposes in order to present himself postmortem. However, two perpetrators did not show any peculiar interest in media violence.

Practical and social implications – Violent media consumption is no necessary condition for school shootings, but seems to promote the development toward an offense under certain circumstances. Therefore, intensive media consumption, especially if thematically related to an offense, should be taken seriously and considered in prevention and intervention efforts.

Originality/value of chapter – The findings add to the literature on risk factors for school shootings with regard to violent media consumption. The subject is analyzed in detail in a sample of German offenders, thereby widening the scope of analyzed school shootings.

Details

School Shootings: Mediatized Violence in a Global Age
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-919-6

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Article
Publication date: 28 April 2020

Naomi Kunstler and Jack Tsai

This paper aims to understand landlords’ attitudes toward applicants with histories of sex offenses and landlords’ willingness to broaden eligibility criteria for tenancy.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to understand landlords’ attitudes toward applicants with histories of sex offenses and landlords’ willingness to broaden eligibility criteria for tenancy.

Design/methodology/approach

A convenience sample of 50 landlords in Connecticut were interviewed. The content of interviews was analyzed to examine how often a landlord would be open to renting to individuals on the sex offender registry and what conditions affect their decisions.

Findings

In total, 44% of landlords would not rent to adults with histories of sex offenses under any circumstance, but 8% of landlords reported they would rent to such individuals and an additional 36% of landlords were open to it with a high threshold for other indicators of good tenancy such as stable housing history, good credit and timely rental payments.

Practical implications

These findings not only illustrate the real-world challenges in finding housing for adults with histories of sex offenses but also highlight opportunities in working with landlords.

Originality/value

There has been little examination of housing adults with sex offenders from the perspective of landlords, which is important to understand to address this difficult and sensitive issue.

Details

Housing, Care and Support, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-8790

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2020

Chengjing You

This paper aims to convict the offender of real concurrence offenses of the most severe offense and applying the most severe penalty will result in no distinction between…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to convict the offender of real concurrence offenses of the most severe offense and applying the most severe penalty will result in no distinction between the perpetrator who conducted more than one act and the one who conducted only one act. This approach deviates from the purpose of criminal law. The real concurrence of offenses means several offenses, the perpetrator’s dangerousness and culpability are much higher than the perpetrator who commits just one crime, so combined punishments for several offenses should be applied to the real concurrence of offenses.

Design/methodology/approach

If the depositors are acquaintances or relatives and friends, the relationship can be explained by “personality trust.” If the depositors are strangers, but they have complied with their duties of care, the deposit relationship can be explained by “system trust.”

Findings

The real concurrence of offenses means several offenses, the perpetrator’s dangerousness and culpability are much higher than the perpetrator who commits just one crime, so combined punishments for several offenses should be applied to the real concurrence of offenses.

Originality/value

The principle of choosing the most severe punishment applied to the real concurrence of offense should be abolished. As the perpetrator separately conducts two acts at different times, these acts infringe on different legal interests. Although these acts exist closely, the authors cannot deny that these acts constitute more than one offense.

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2016

Carrie Trojan and Gabrielle Salfati

The purpose of this paper is to determine how offenses co-occur in the backgrounds of homicide offenders and if identified groups of offenses reflect an underlying…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine how offenses co-occur in the backgrounds of homicide offenders and if identified groups of offenses reflect an underlying theoretical construct or theme; and to determine if offenders specialize in thematically similar offenses.

Design/methodology/approach

The previous convictions of 122 single-victim homicide offenders were examined using smallest space analysis to identify groups of co-occurring offenses across offenders’ criminal histories.

Findings

The results showed a thematic distinction between violent vs instrumental offenses and 84 percent of offenders specialized in offenses within a single dominant theme, suggesting that the framework can differentiate the majority of offenders’ criminal backgrounds. Possible sub-themes were identified that could suggest further demarcation of the themes and provide a more refined framework that may be of even greater utility in differentiating offenders.

Research limitations/implications

This study utilized data from a single American city that may affect generalizability of the findings. The exclusion of a timeline for prior offending precludes consideration of offending escalation.

Originality/value

The current study uses an alternative approach to conceptualize specialization according to how offenses co-occur in the backgrounds of homicide offenders. This approach is less restrictive than considering the offenses in isolation to one another and may be of greater utility in empirically derived offender profiling models. The thematic framework developed herein can act as a foundation for future studies.

Details

Journal of Criminal Psychology, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2009-3829

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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2009

Stefan D. Cassella

The purpose of this paper is to inform an international audience of the difficulties prosecutors in the USA have encountered in light of a decision of the US Supreme Court…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to inform an international audience of the difficulties prosecutors in the USA have encountered in light of a decision of the US Supreme Court limiting the application of the federal anti‐money laundering statute to cases where a criminal enterprise generated profits.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper summarizes the law in the USA regarding money laundering prosecutions before the decision in the United States v. Santos, outlines the decision of the Supreme Court, and organizes the post‐Santos case law into categories setting forth the divergent views of what the decision means and how it is to be applied.

Findings

The case law in the USA regarding money laundering prosecutions is now quite unsettled. Courts have taken different views as to whether the government must now prove that the funds being laundered by or on behalf of a criminal represent the profits of the criminal enterprise as opposed to its gross receipts.

Research limitations/implications

The case law on this issue continues to develop at a rapid pace. It is necessary to cut off the research on this issue to complete the paper, but the reader should be aware that new cases are being issued in rapid order.

Practical implications

Prosecutors in the USA now face several obstacles in bringing money launderers to justice. Decisions in closed cases may be reopened as defendants argue that their convictions are obtained under an incorrect view of the law. Going forward, prosecutors are uncertain whether the government must prove that a criminal enterprise is profitable before they can obtain a conviction for money laundering.

Originality/value

Prior to Santos, it is assumed that it is an offense to launder the gross receipts of a crime or criminal scheme. Santos cases grave doubt on that assumption, holding that in at least some cases, the laundering offense will apply only where the financial transaction involves the net profits of an offense. This is an object lesson in the confusion that can result from inartful legislative drafting. It also provides a guide to the current state of the law and suggests how prosecutors in the USA are dealing with the problem pending any legislative correction.

Details

Journal of Money Laundering Control, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1368-5201

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