Essay The Tragedy of White-Collar Crime

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The years 2008 shined a light on a group of people who were considered high society. When the stock market crashed in September 2008, the world shines a spotlight on the financial corporation. Words such as hedge fund manager and financial instrument such as credit default swaps are not words not known to everyday citizens. The economic downturn forced society to ask question not normally asked.
The reality that there are criminal who has assessed too many people retirement and investment is a shocking and alarming to the non-professional investor. When someone is in a legitimate occupation and committing, an illegal act is a white-collar crime. “To be more concise white - collar crime is define as any illegal act, punishable by a criminal sanction, that is committed in the courses of a legitimate occupation or pursuit by a corporation or by an otherwise respectable individual of high social standing” (Conklin, 2007, Criminology, p. 69).
This is not to say that all white-collar crime is committed by upper income or affluent persons. The Sociologist Edwin Sutherland, who is responsible for the term white-collar crime around, classified some lesser affluent crimes as white-collar crime. The next section of this paper examines the different type of white-collar crime and the law that regulate them. Moreover, the social impact of the white-collar crimes will be analyzed as well.
“The laws that governed many of the offenses considered white collar fall under the scope of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 which regulate trading of certain financial instrument like bonds , stocks and debentures”( Another law governing white-collar crimes is the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890. The Sherman Act lim...

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...trate more on white collar crime because as the 2008 financial meltdown have shown white collar crime can bring down a country.
In conclusion, The years 2008 shined a light on a group of people who were considered high society. When the stock market crashed in September 2008, the world shines a spotlight on the financial corporation. The world now knows what words such as hedge fund manager and financial instrument such as credit default swaps mean today. The economic downturn forced society to ask questions not normally asked and now pay closer attention to white collar crimes.


Conklin, J. E. (2007). Criminology (10th ed.). Boston: Pearson, Allyn, and Bacon.
Price, M. & Norris, D. (2009) White-Collar Crime: Corporate and Securities and Commodities Fraud Retrieved from

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