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NCJ Number: 77195 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Theft, Robbery and Conning in Cali, Colombia - Some Implications for Policy
Author(s): C Birbeck
Corporate Author: University College of Swansea
Centre for Development Studies
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 86
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

University College of Swansea
Centre for Development Studies
Singleton Park
Swansea, SA2 8PP,
United Kingdom
Document: PDF
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This document examines the prevalence of theft, robbery, and 'conning' (confidence games) in Cali, Colombia, and discusses the need for better protection against crime and easier access to criminal justice, particularly among the poor.
Abstract: Although the main concern is with the activities of a specific group of low-income criminals, the text reviews the overall pattern and characteristics of crime in Colombia and in the city of Cali. After a discussion of crime in general, the significance of property crime as compared to the other types of crime is considered, and the pattern of victimization produced by theft, robbery, and conning in Cali is analyzed with respect to the social groups, age groups, and sex of victims. The State's response to the problems of theft, robbery, and conning also receives attention, and the State is considered in terms of its domination by the interests of a powerful minority. It is argued that the actions of the police, the courts, and the prisons in relation to property crime can only be understood by examining the extent to which this minority perceives these crimes as problematic and by considering how this problem compares with other minority-defined 'problems,' such as political subversion. This leads into a discussion of the structuring of opportunities for theft, robbery, and conning. The social organization of these crimes is then discussed in relation to the particular group of criminals studied. Particular emphasis is given to the need to see crime in terms of its social significance to the criminal so that offenders' actions may be better understood. It is argued that crime is not constructed in isolation but is a product of the wider social environment from which it originates. The concluding chapter attempts some critical considerations relating to current policy regarding property crime and the treatment of criminals. Data tables, footnotes, a sample questionnaire, and a 48-item reference list are included. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Colombia; Confidence game; Economic influences; Habitual offenders; Police crime-prevention; Robbery; Social classes; Theft offenses; Victimization surveys
Note: Monograph no. 8 in the Centre for Development Studies series.
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