Corporate and White-Collar Crime
1. The normalization of deviance- how it unfolds in corporate and white collar crime. What
allows for corporate crimes to be normalized?
2. The difference between white collar crime and corporate crime.
3. Especially in terms of women.
4. Objective harm tends to be much lower than perceived harm. In this case, the objective
harm outweighs the perceived harm.
5. 3 individual case studies. 3 documentaries or videos WHICH WILL BE ON THE EXAM!
2. In the way economic and political resources can be applied to the amplification of deviance,
we can see how these same resources can be used to resist the application of law. Particulary
referring to corporate economic elite.
Normalization of crime: The process through which activities are minimized or downplayed, it is
not defined as a crime, it is normalized and decriminalized.
3. Power is exercised in two points: 1) in laws that are actually passed such as legislations.
Political lobbying becomes important here. Even if legislations are passed, efforts are made to
water down these legislations and look for loop holes that will limit its extent and reach. 2)
Enforcement- deciding how laws should be enforced, how corporate power is exercised. The
revolving door – the corruption of the regulatory process.
“Normalization of Deviance”
Flexibility of Law
Prostitution and Drug Offenses
Criminal Civil Regulatory Ethical Violation
Corporate and White-Collar Crime
“Crimes” versus “Offenses” “Immoral” versus “Unethical”
6. The disconnect between objective harm and perceived harm.
Slide 3 – Definition of Terms
1. White – Collar (Occupational) Crime. Individual
phantom supplier: introduce a fake supplier into the books, provide false invoices, the company
pays out the invoices, and the payment is then redirected to the employee.
2. Corporate (Organizational) Crime. Corporation
False advertising: The primary beneficiary is the company by making unsubstantiating ways
about the product. This boosts sales and revenues.
3. Economic Crime. Independently
They may target corporations such as hacking schemes. Economic crimes more frequently
target individuals. This includes scams and fraud.
Examples include: The lottery scam & US Army Scam
1. Edmund Sutherland – differential theory. 1940s: introduction of white collar crime.
Sutherland was the founder of the inquiry of white collar. He coined white collar crime on
December 1939 in a speech he made. 1900-1944 – a violation of series of laws in
relation to US corporations. This included false advertising and unfair labour practices.
Sutherland was interested in these laws. He collected 980 decisions about the 70 largest
US corporations. He noticed that only 158 (16%) had criminal responsibility. The rest
were pursued through non-criminal sanctions such as junction and desist orders and civil
law suits. Criminal sanctions were an option to pursue them but many decided not to go
down that route. Because of this, he adopted a different and broader definition of white
collar crime – as long as 2 criteria are satisfied: 1) the activity was legally prohibited,
there was a law that prohibited the activity that described social injurious. 2) the activity
was covered by a legal penalty. It didn’t have to be a criminal conviction; it could have
just been a fine. Sutherland used this broader definition and found 779 were guilty of
committing crimes. Sutherland used a sociological perspective and was treated as a
recommendation for the legal system.
2. Corporate harm: risk, safety, concepts like these become essential.
3. Corporate crimes scholars rely on court cases such as civil court cases. The most
significant source of info will be from data from regulatory agencies. This shows which companies have been charged with violations of environmental laws and health and
safety laws. This is a problem and a significant limitation.
4. Corporations are private actors, by law they are defined as individuals. You have to ask
whether to enter their property and interview their employees. Deceptive measures can
be used to bend corporate crime boundaries. Late 70s, mid 1