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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 84128 Find in a Library
Title: Aspects of the Control of Economic Crime in the United Kingdom (From Economic Crime in Europe, P 15-38, 1980, L H Leigh, ed. - See NCJ-84126)
Author(s): L H Leigh
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 24
Sponsoring Agency: St Martin's Press
New York, NY 10010
Sale Source: St Martin's Press
Scholarly & Reference Division
175 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Complex institutional jurisdictional concerns in the enforcement of economic crime laws in the United Kingdom, discretion in the use of the criminal process, the effectiveness of criminal penalties against economic crime, and cooperation with foreign jurisdictions are discussed.
Abstract: In England and Wales, there is no comprehensive prosecutions service such as exists in France and West Germany. The English system is further complicated because several agencies other than the police have enforcement functions in the areas of investigation, prosecution, or both. Further, there is a wide measure of discretion both at common law and under statute concerning whether to prosecute for an offense. It is clear that regarding a number of infractions, both practice and the structure of modern legislative schemes result in enforcement authorities' relying on informal machinery, then upon administrative devices or civil procedures, and only ultimately upon the criminal law as a last resort. In Britain, both legal persons (corporations) and individuals are subject to the criminal law. There is little evidence to suggest that British courts are lenient toward the wealthy and influential offender. The real issue in discretionary enforcement policies is whether it is proper to treat the criminal law as a mechanism of last resort in dealing with certain economic crimes and whether a policy of administrative enforcement has not sometimes resulted in an ignoring of civil liberties guarantees. Conventional penalties have not been wholly effective in suppressing economic crime, so the courts have been empowered to impose disqualification orders on the directors and managers of companies. The United Kingdom has traditional mechanisms of law enforcement cooperation with European neighbors, but has done little to extend measures of cooperation in criminal matters. A total of 65 notes are listed.
Index Term(s): Administrative adjudication; International cooperation; Judicial discretion; Prosecutorial discretion; United Kingdom (UK); White collar crime
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