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Political Crime


These crimes are different than other crimes because they are crimes for the ... FBI and CIA. CIA opening and photographing mail of private citizens. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Political Crime

Political Crime
  • Political Crimes Against the State
  • Domestic Political Crimes by the State
  • In the News
  • Theories

Political Crimes Against the State
  • Are violations of a law for the purpose of
    modifying or changing social conditions

Political Crimes Against the State
  • These crimes are different than other crimes
    because they are crimes for the purpose of
    improving a society on the behalf of a group or
    others not on personal gain.
  • Class, race, gender, political party
  • Political crimes are usually intended to be overt
    and public to draw media attention
  • There is two types of Political Crimes Against
    the State
  • Violent
  • Non-Violent

Violent Political Crimes
  • Through-out the United States history there has
    been many examples of violent political crimes
  • The Revolutionary War (1775-1783)
  • Shays Rebellion
  • The Farmers Rebellion
  • The Haymarket Square in Chicago (1886)
  • The struggle for 8 hour work day

Violent Political Crimes
  • When people think about violent political crimes
    they think of terrorism
  • Terrorism is the use of force or violence to
    intimidate, coerce, or change a society or
  • There is 3 types of terrorism
  • Political Assassination
  • Domestic terrorism
  • International terrorism

Political Assassination
  • Political Assassination is the murder of a
    political leader
  • Examples
  • John Wilkes Booth murdered President Lincoln in
    1865 in support of slavery and the confederacy
  • The assassination of President Kennedy was the
    most infamous murder of a political leader
    because of the conspiracies

Domestic Terrorism
  • Are violent crimes against the state by the
  • On April 19, 1995 we witnessed the worst act of
    domestic terrorism
  • Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols bombed the
    Alfred P. Murray Federal Building in Oklahoma
    City killing 168 people and injuring over 500
  • They were the members of an antigovernment
    paramilitary right-wing militia group

International Terrorism
  • Violent crimes against the state by citizens of a
    different country
  • The first bombing of the World Trade Center
  • Killed 6 and injured over 1,000
  • Was allegedly bombed to punish the United States
    for support of Israel
  • 9/11
  • To punish the US for its support of corrupt and
    authoritarian leaders in several Arab states and
    our Western values

Non-Violent Political Crimes Against the State
  • Most crimes against the state are non-violent
  • There is two main types of non-violent crimes
  • Civil Disobedience and Demonstrations
  • Anti-globalization

Civil Disobedience
  • Civil disobedience or the refusing to obey
    certain laws because they are seen as unjust
  • Using civil disobedience to protest by
    demonstrations or sit-ins
  • Example Martin Luther King Jr.s civil rights
    movement of the early 1960s

  • Is a movement of challenging the negative aspects
    of globalization
  • Spying is a form of anti-globalization
  • There are many different spies and they are
    categorized by their motivation
  • Mercenary spies
  • Ideology spies
  • Alienated/ egocentric spies
  • Buccaneer Spy
  • Computer Spying

  • Mercenary Spies are the most common and provide
    intelligence secrets to a foreign government for
    monetary gain
  • Ideological Spies provide secrets to foreign
    governments because of strong political or
    ideological beliefs
  • Alienated/ Egocentric Spies provide secrets to a
    foreign government because they want revenge
    against the US or government agency
  • Buccaneer Spy provides secrets to a foreign
    government for adventure and for excitement
  • Computer Spying is a growing issue which involves
    the ability to spy into anothers computer system
    and hack their information

Political Crime by the State
  • Domestic Political crimes by the state are
    violations of law and unethical conduct by state
    officials or agencies whose victimization occurs
    with in the boundaries of the United States.

Types of Crime
  • State Corruption- is illegal or unethical use of
    state authority for personal or political gain.
  • Political Repression- is illegal or unethical
    conduct by state officials or agences for
    purposes of repressing domestic political
  • State Corporate Crime- is illegal or socially
    harmful behavior that occurs at the intersection
    of state agencies and private corporations

State Corruption
  • Political Bribery
  • Election Fraud-
  • The Gore Ballets of 2000 in the state of Florida,
    which Bush ended up winning.
  • Corrupt Campaign Practices

State Political Repression
  • FBI and CIA
  • CIA opening and photographing mail of private
  • Illegally searching and confiscating documents.
  • Installing illegal surveillance devices.

State Corporate Crime
  • 2 Types of state corporate crime
  • When a state agency utilizes a private
    corporation to achieve a state goal in an illegal
    or socially harmful way.
  • When omissions by a state agency allow a private
    corporation to pursue illegal or socially harmul

State Corporate Crime
  • 1986 Space shuttle Challenger explodes 73 seconds
    after take off.
  • Used Morton Thiokol to launch the shuttle despite
    evidence it was unsafe to do so.
  • 1991 a fire in Imperial Food Products. Killed 25
    employees and injured another 56.
  • Caused by many policies being side stepped by

In The News
  • Violent political crimes against the state
  • September 11, 2001
  • 4 US commercial planes hijacked
  • 2 flew into the World Trade Center Buildings
  • 1 into the Pentagon Building
  • 1 crashed into a field which was believed to be
    heading towards the White House Mass murder
  • 3000 as well as mass suicide of 19 hijackers
  • Osama Bin Laden mastermind
  • Motive?

In the News Continued
  • Nonviolent political crimes against the state
  • Animal Liberation Front
  • People who fight to protect the rights of animals
  • They release animals used for testing or being
  • Puppy mills, cosmetic companiesetc

  • Domestic political crimes against the state
  • Election fraud
  • Mark D. Tate
  • Virginia State Senate Candidate
  • Allegedly made misstatements on campaign finance

  • Conflict theory
  • The political process of law making, law breaking
    and law enforcement becomes a direct reflection
    of deep-seated and fundamental conflicts between
    interest groups and their more general struggle
    for the control of the police power of the state.
  • Vold says crime is a behavior committed by
    minority groups whose regular actions and goals
    have not been secured by legislative process.
  • Those who reject the majority view tend to be

Richard Quinneys Conflict Theory of Crime
  • Society is divided along political lines. Persons
    become criminal when others define their behavior
    as such.
  • Criminal definitions exist because the interests
    of some groups of society are in conflict with
    the interests of other groups. According to
    Quinney, the greater the degree of social
    conflict, the more likely it is that those in
    power will criminalize the behavior of the
    powerless groups that conflict with their
  • The content of laws and their application tend to
    reflect the interests of the powerful because the
    powerful typically control or manipulate members
    of law enforcement and judicial machinery.

Tittles Theory of Control Balance
  • The amount of control to which an individual is
    subject, relative to the amount of control he or
    she can exercise, determines the probability of
    deviance occurring and also what type.
  • Control balance will result in conformity
  • Control surplus and control deficit are likely to
    result in criminal behavior.(p421)
  • Predation- acts of direct physical violence,
    manipulation of property extraction
  • Exploitation acts of indirect predation ie.
    price-fixing, unsafe work places, contract
  • Defiance acts of hostility or contempt for
    social norms including vandalism, political
    protests, bring the actor no obvious benefit.
  • Plunder acts of autocratic behavior, rarely
    committed with an awareness of their harmfulness
    ie. ethnic cleansing, destruction of the
  • Decadence acts of undisciplined excess
  • Submission- acts in which one allows oneself to
    be physically abused (p420)

  • Beirne, Piers. Messerschmidt, James. (2007,
    February 8). Criminology 4th Edition. Oxford
  • University Press, USA.
  • Burbaker, B. (2008, January 25). Fraud Charges
    Filed Against Ex-Candidate Circuit Court Judge
    Dropped Similar Actions in October. The
    Washington Post, pp. B5.
  • CPJ Freedom Press Online. 2008. CPJ Calls for
    Release of Imprisoned Journalists. New York, NY
    Committee to Protect Journalists, Retrieved
  • April 28, 2008.
  • (http//www.cpj.org/news/2008/asia/china31ja
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