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SOCA 1010: LECTURE NOTES

TOPIC: TYPES OF CRIME

Typologies of crime is a classification of a large numbers of criminal offences or offenders


into easily understood categories on the basis of their legal definition, their collective goals,
objectives and consequences.
THERE ARE 6 TYPES OF CRIME:
1. Interpersonal violence
a. It is a crime in which the offender uses or threatens to use violent force upon
the victim.
b. This entails both crimes in which the violent act is the objective (murder), as
well as crimes in which violence is the means to an end (robbery).
c. Violent crimes include crimes committed with weapons.
d. This category of crime includes:
i. Forcible rape
1. Rape – the carnal knowledge of the female forcibly and against
her will.
2. The definition of rape excludes other forms of sexual assault
such as male to male, female to female or female to male
sexual assaults.
3. in the early western civilization, rape was common as men
staked a claim of ownership on women by forcibly abducting
and raping them.

ii. Murder and homicide


1. Homicide – the killing of another human
2. Murder – unlawful killing of a human being with malice
aforethought (the intent to kill).
3. It is the most serious of all common law crimes and the only
one that can still be punished by death.

iii. Assault and battery


1. Assault – requires no actual touching but involves either
attempted battery or intentionally frightening the victims by
word or deed.
2. Battery – requires offensive touching such as slap, hit or punch
the victim.
3. Assault in the home:
4. Child abuse – any physical or emotional trauma to a child for
which no reasonable explanation can be found. Child abuse can
result from actual physical beating administered to a child by
hands, feet, weapon, burning, stick, belts etc., as well as result

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from neglect (not providing a child with the care and shelter to
which a child is entitled.
5. Sexual abuse – the exploitation of children through rape, incest,
and molestation by parents or other adults.

iv. Robbery
1. Robbery – the taking or attempt to take anything of value from
the care, custody or control from the person/persons by force or
threat of force or violence and/or by putting the victim in fear.
2. It is considered a violent crime because it involves the use of
force to obtain money or goods.

v. Hate crimes
1. Usually involve inconvenient, vulnerable targets who are
incapable of fighting back. Example: attacks against vagrants,
gay bashing, attack against racial and ethnic minorities.

2. Property crime
a. Acts that violate criminal law and are designed to bring financial reward to an
offender.
b. Although society generally disapproves of crimes involving theft and
corruption, but the public seems quite tolerant. This is because, unlike violent
crimes, economic crimes never seems to seriously hurt anyone.
c. This category of crimes include:
i. Larceny/theft
1. Larceny is a crime involving the unlawful taking of the
personal property of another person.
2. Larceny is a crime against possession. Furthermore, it has two
elements which must be met, the actual taking of the property,
even if momentarily (actus reus) and the culpable intent to
deprive another of their property (mens rea).

ii. Motor vehicle theft


1. Motor vehicle theft is the criminal act of stealing or attempting
to steal a car.
2. Some methods used by criminals to steal motor vehicles
include:
a. Theft of an unattended vehicle without key(s):
b. Theft with access to keys:
c. Carjacking: Refers to the taking of a vehicle by force
or threat of force from its owner or operator.
iii. Fraud/ the crime of false pretenses
1. Fraud is a deception deliberately practiced in order to secure
unfair or unlawful gain (adjectival form fraudulent;
to defraud is the verb).

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iv. Embezzlement
1. Embezzlement is the act of dishonestly withholding assets for
the purpose of conversion (theft) of such assets by one or more
individuals to whom such assets have been entrusted, to be held
and/or used for other purposes.

v. Burglary
1. Burglary (also called breaking and entering and
sometimes housebreaking) is a crime, the essence of which is
illegal entry into a building for the purposes of committing an
offence. Usually that offence will be theft, but most
jurisdictions specify others which fall within the ambit of
burglary.

vi. Arson
1. Arson is the crime of intentionally and maliciously setting fire
to buildings, wild land areas, vehicles or other property with the
intent to cause damage. It may be distinguished from other
causes such as spontaneous combustion and natural wildfires.
Arson often involves fires deliberately set to the property of
another or to one's own property as to
collect insurance compensation.
2. A person who commits this crime is called an arsonist. More
often than not, arsonists use accelerants (such as gasoline or
kerosene) to ignite, propel, and directionalise fires.

3. Enterprise crime
a. Criminal activities that are typically ongoing and involves groups of people
who provide supports, expertise and so on.
b. They are referred to as business enterprise criminals because of their
connections to business and commerce and because they conspire to make
illegal profits.
c. 2 distinct categories of enterprise crime:
i. White collar crimes
1. Involves illegal activities of people and institutions whose
acknowledge purpose is illegal profit through legitimate
business transactions.
2. Components of white collar crime:
a. White collar swindles
b. Chiselling
c. Individual exploitation of institutional position
d. Influence peddling and bribery
e. Pilferage, embezzlement and employee fraud .
f. Client fraud
g. Corporate/organizational crime -
ii. Green collar crimes

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1. The activities that lead to environmental harm, environmental
laws and environmental rules.
2. The two crimes are connected because in each category the
offender twists legal rules to enhance their personal economic
position through illicit commercial enterprise. Sometimes they
may also overlap.
3. Forms of green collar crime:
a. Illegal logging
b. Illegal wildlife exports
c. Illegal fishing
d. Illegal dumping
e. Criminal environmental pollution
4. Cyber crime
a. Cybercrime - Theft and/or destruction of information, resources, or funds
utilizing computers, computer networks and the internet – it can be singular or
ongoing.
b. Typology of cybercrime:
i. Cyber theft - use of cyber space either to distribute illegal goods and
services or to defraud people for quick profit.
1. Computer fraud – theft from ATMs, software theft, theft of
information (hacking), manipulation of account/ banking
system, corporate espionage.
2. Distributing illicit or illegal services and material –
3. Denial-of-service attack – it typically designed to harass or
extort money from legitimate users of an internet service by
threatening to prevent the user having access to the service.
4. Illegal copyright infringement –
ii. Cyber vandalism - use of cyber space for revenge, for destruction or to
achieve malicious end
1. Worms, viruses, Trojan horses, logic bombs and spam -
2. Website Defacement – it occurs when a computer hacker
intrudes on another person’s website by inserting or
substituting codes that expose visitors to the site to misleading
or provocative information.
3. Cyberstalking – the use of the internet, e-mail or other
electronic communication devices to stalk another person.
Stalker can pursue victims through online chat rooms.
Pedophiles can use the internet to establish a relationship with
the child, and later make contact for the purpose of engaging in
criminal sexual activities.
4. Cyber bullying – the willful and repeated harm inflicted
through the medium of electronic text. Among the methods
used by bullies 1) use computer and send harassing emails or
instant messages, post obscene, insulting and slanderous
messages to online bulletin boards or social networking sites 2)

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cyberbullies can use a cell phone to send harassing text
messages to the victims.
5. Cyberspying – illegally using the internet to gather information
considered private and confidential.
iii. Cyber warfare - an effort by enemy forces to disrupt the intersection
where the virtual electronics reality of computers meets the physical
world.
1. Logic bombs used to disrupt or destroy “secure” system or
networks, Internet used to communicate covertly with agents
around the world.
2. Politically motivated
3. Against information, computer systems, computer programs,
and data
4. Results in violence against noncombatant targets by sub-
national groups or clandestine agents

5. Organized crime
a. Organized crime involves illegal activities of people and organizations whose
acknowledged purpose is profit through illegitimate business enterprise.
b. In some parts of the world, organized crime threatens the economic and social
stability of entire nations, as can be seen in the civil strife caused by the drug
cartels in Columbia, and the mafia-violence in Italy.
c. Organized crime uses some of its huge illegal profits to expand into legitimate
businesses that serve as useful tax covers and money-laundering operations.
d. Organized crime is a system in which illegal activities are carried out as part
of a rational plan devised by a large organization that is attempting to
maximize its profit.

6. Public order crime


a. Referred to certain behaviours, which society has banned or limited because
they are believed to run contrary to social norms, customs, and values are said
to be public order crimes.
b. It involves acts that interfere with the operations of society and the ability of
people to function efficiently; these behaviors are outlawed because they are
commonly in conflict with social policy, prevailing moral rules, and current
public opinion.
c. Varieties of public order crime
i. Prostitution
1. Prostitution is the business or practice of engaging in sexual
activity in exchange for payment
2. The legality of prostitution in Europe varies by country.
3. Some countries outlaw the act of engaging in sexual activity in
exchange for money, while others allow prostitution itself but
not most forms of procuring (such as operating brothels,
facilitating the prostitution of another, deriving financial gain
from the prostitution of another, soliciting/loitering).

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4. In eight European countries (The Netherlands, Germany,
Austria, Switzerland, Greece, Turkey, Hungary, and Latvia)
prostitution is legal and regulated.
5. Prostitution in the United States is illegal, except in some rural
counties of the state of Nevada.
ii. Pornography
1. Pornography derives from Greek word “porne” (prostitute)
and “graphein” (to write)
2. Found in books or magazine or any writing material that
display or depict every imaginable explicit sex act. The purpose
of the material is to provide sexual titillation and excitement for
paying customers.
3. Obscenity derives from the Latin word “caenum” (filth. It is
defined as deeply offensive to morality or decency (Webster
dictionary).
4. The problem of controlling pornography centres in the
definition of obscenity.The law enforcement can only seize
materials that is judged as obscene.

iii. Substance abuse


1. Drug – a set of substances with clearly identifiable chemical
properties or biological effects
2. The property of “drug-ness” exist in a state of nature, it is
independent of human judgement.
3. It is as well understood based on its “psychoactivity” – the
capacity to influence the working of the mind (mood, feeling,
emotion, thinking, cognition, how people see, perceive and
experience the world. (objective definition)
4. Subjective definition of drug – how drugs are seen, evaluated,
judged defined, regarded, dealt with, treated, reacted to or
socially constructed. They define drugs based on what are
thought to be drugs, by the fact that they are talked about,
thought about, and looked upon as dugs.

iv. Other victimless crime is like gambling, drunkenness, vagrancy,


disorderly conduct, traffic violations etc.

d. Most of these crimes are often called victimless crimes because they cause no
harm to anyone but the offenders themselves.
e. Society considers them crimes because they violate the order of customs of the
community, but some of them, such as gambling and prostitution, are granted
a certain amount of tolerance.