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White-Collar Crime

15 January, 2016 - 09:31

White-collar crime, as distinguished from “street crime,” refers generally to fraud-related acts carried out in a nonviolent way, usually connected with business. Armed bank robbery is not a white-collar crime, but embezzlement by a teller or bank officer is. Many white-collar crimes are included within the statutory definitions of embezzlement and false pretenses. Most are violations of state law. Depending on how they are carried out, many of these same crimes are also violations of federal law. Any act of fraud in which the United States postal system is used or which involves interstate phone calls or Internet connections is a violation of federal law. Likewise, many different acts around the buying and selling of securities can run afoul of federal securities laws. Other white-collar crimes include tax fraud; price fixing; violations of food, drug, and environmental laws; corporate bribery of foreign companies; and—the newest form—computer fraud. Some of these are discussed here; others are covered in later chapters.