White collar and corporate crimes are crimes that many people do not associate with criminal activity. Yet the cost to the country due to corporate and white collar crime far exceeds that of "street" crime and benefit fraud. White collar and corporate crimes refer to crimes that take place within a business or institution and include everything from Tax fraud to health and safety breaches.
Corporate crime is extremely difficult to detect for many reasons. One major reason is that many people do not realise a crime is being committed as corporate crime is often seen as a victimless crime. At face value this may seem to be the case but if you look deeper you will see that this is not true. Every year the FBI estimates that 19,000 Americans are murdered every year compared with the 56,000 Americans who die every year from occupational disease such as black lung and asbestosis (Russell Mokhiber 2000). Deaths Caused by corporate crime are also very indirect so it can be very difficult to trace the problem to the corporation.
Another reason it can be difficult to detect corporate crime is that directors within a corporation are unlikely to report the criminal activity of their colleges for the fear that it will hinder their own career success and could even lead to them losing their jobs. Within a company illegal practices could be seen by many as the "in thing" and the people working within that environment may not see what they are doing as morally wrong.
The issue of the lack of media coverage of these types of crimes must also not be over looked. Many newspaper editors would chose to run a story about a violent assault or brutal murder over a story involving a corporate crime. This is a major factor contributing to the publics ignorance or corporate crime.
Even if corporate crime is detected it can be very difficult to prosecute and when prosecuted is...