Comparative Criminal Justice Systems by liuqingyan


   Criminal Justice

             CHAPTER TWO


           Why measure crime
        and compare crime data ?

What do comparative criminoligists study?

  What do comparative criminal justice
           scholars study?
    Limits of Comparative
      Criminal Justice

Variation in crime rates (crime as a social
  phenomenon) must first be established
 before behavioral explanations (crime as
        social behavior) are offered.
       Limitations of International
               Crime Data

   Underreporting: social and political reasons

   Nonstandard Definitions

   Differences in collection and recording
    practices: inconsistencies and politics
                          Social Reasons

      Citizens fail to report many crimes because of:

   No insurance
   Accessibility to police
   Limited telephone access
   Fear of reprisals; fear or dislike of police (mistrust)
   Wish to protect the perpetrator
   Not serious/no loss
   Different social norms in different countries, i.e., rape in U.S.
    and Mexico
                            Political Reasons

                Countries fail to report crime because:

   Some countries lack the technical resources and knowledge
    necessary to report crime data.

   Some countries are concerned that crime data will negatively affect
    their nation’s world standing or tourist trade.

   Some countries are concerned that crime data will indicate a
    weakness in their political philosophy.

   Some countries are too involved in civil war to keep track of crime
         Nonstandard Definitions
                           Major issue:
          Determining what is a crime versus what is legal

   Interpol and the United Nation’s request countries report to
    report crime according to their categories, however, this
    creates confusion and controversy.

   Laws and legal codes in some cases are so different that it is
    difficult to make comparisons, i.e., rape – Italy and Croatia.

   In other words, comparing a specific crime in two countries
    may not actually compare similar acts.
             Differences in Collection
             and Recording Practices

   Styles of different interviewers and recorders may vary considerably.

   Inconsistency in crime data collection and recording by police
    departments (both within and across countries).

   Countries in developing countries lack manpower and technology to
    efficiently collect, record, and report crime data.

   Many countries do not have a unified criminal justice system, thus
    they may not be able to collect crime statistics on a national level.

   Some countries count crimes when they are reported to police, other
    countries count crimes when police forward them for prosecution.
Data Sets for Crime Comparison
   Interpol data

   Council of Europe surveys

   United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime surveys

   United Nations Survey on Crime Trends and Operations of
    Criminal Justice Systems

   International Crime Victim Survey
            Crime Trends

Crime survey results cannot be used to rank
countries, they are appropriate for assessing
      the direction of change in crime.

       In other words, they are useful
      for identifying trends over time.

Does the availability of guns influence a
      country’s violent crime rate?

Why would homicide rates be a reliable
 indicator of that crime across countries
whereas many crimes are not comparable
                indicators ?
      Transnational Crime

It is difficult to define transnational crime,
however, it normally includes the reliance of
    several individuals and groups in many
 countries working together to complete the
crime. It often has an organized component,
      i.e., transnational organized crime.
       Transnational Crime Types
   Aircraft Hijacking                  Money Laundering

   Computer crime/cyber crime          Sea Piracy

   Corruption and Bribery of           Theft of art and artifacts
    public and political officials
                                        Trafficking in persons
   Environmental crime
                                        Trafficking in human body
   Drug Trafficking                     parts

   Arms Trafficking                    Terrorism
      Characteristics of Terrorism

   Distinction between domestic and international terrorism,
    i.e., Oklahoma City – September 11, 2001.

   Political in aims and motives.

   Exploitation of fear (terror) through violence or the threat
    of violence.

   Psychological effects (fear through intimidation).

   Perpetrated by a subnational group or non-state entity.
      Characteristics of Terrorism

   Designed to create power when there is no power.

   To terrorists, there are no rules of warfare or codes of

   The goal is that through the publicity generated from
    their violence, terrorists will have the leverage to effect
    political change.

   Perpetrated by some organizational entity with an
    identifiable chain of command capable of conspiratorial
           Terrorism Typologies
   Nationalist: seek to form a separate state for their
    own national group, i.e., freedom fighters.
    Examples include: IRA, Basque Fatherland and
    Liberty, and Kurdistan Worker’s Party.

   Religious: use violence to further what they
    believe are divinely commanded purposes – a
    spiritual rather than a military objective. Examples
    include: Al-Qaeda, HAMAS, Hezbollah, Aum
           Terrorism Typologies

   State-Sponsored: Used by radical states as foreign
    policy – provide a cost effective way to wage war
    covertly through terrorists, i.e., U.S. embassy – Tehran
    (1979). States considered to sponsor terrorism include:
    Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, Syria.
           Terrorism Typologies

   Left-Wing, Right-Wing, and Anarchist: Left-
    wing groups seek to destroy capitalism and replace it
    with a communist social regime. Right-wing groups
    seek to create fascists states. Anarchists are
    revolutionaries who seek to overthrow all forms of
    government. Examples include: Left-Wing (Red
    Brigade, Baader-Meinhof Gang, Japanese Red Army);
    Right-Wing (Neo-Nazis, skinheads, white supremacists);
    and, Anarchist (contemporary anti-globalization groups).

     Why should we care about
       transnational crime?

What is the general response toward
transnational crime - both in the U.S.
       and in other countries?

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