Corporate Crime

In: Business and Management

Submitted By anthzt
Words 1775
Pages 8
“In order to effectively punish and deter corporate crime, the law should impose criminal sanctions on individuals rather than on corporations.”
Introduction

The purpose of this research report is to discuss whether criminal sanctions should be brought upon individuals or on corporations when corporate crime is committed. In determining out who should criminal sanctions be imposed on, a key factor to consider back on is the purpose of imposing criminal sanctions, which is to ‘effectively punish and deter corporate crime’ as stated in the proposition.

Corporate Crime

Firstly, corporate crime can be defined as the conduct of a corporation, or of employees acting on behalf of a corporation, which is illegal and punishable by law including those that violate criminal, civil or administrative law (New South Wales Law Reform Commission [NSW LRC], 2003). This means that corporations ‘themselves’ can be punished for crimes ‘they’ committed, as corporations are separate and legal entities from its shareholders and directors or other officers. Secondly, employees who act on behalf of the organisation, usually those in high or managerial positions such as directors can be punished. There are some existing laws that impose criminal punishments upon individuals, for example breaches in directors’ duties can lead to criminal consequences under section 184 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Sweeney, O’Reilly, & Coleman, 2010). Individual criminal punishment however does not always occur when corporate crime is committed because of the nature of corporations as well as the difficulty to prove and hold individuals at fault beyond reasonable doubt. Although difficult, criminal sanctions should be imposed on individuals where possible, as the main objectives of sentences is to punish offenders and to act as deterrence.

The Nature of Corporations

The law allows…...

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