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October 19, 2008

One criminal justice echo in the midst of the economic crisis

Various bloggers focused on crime and justice have been pondering how the recent economic crisis could impact criminal justice issues. Today's New York Times looks into some of these realities in this article, headlined "F.B.I. Struggles to Handle Financial Fraud Cases." Here is the lead:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is struggling to find enough agents and resources to investigate criminal wrongdoing tied to the country’s economic crisis, according to current and former bureau officials.

The bureau slashed its criminal investigative work force to expand its national security role after the Sept. 11 attacks, shifting more than 1,800 agents, or nearly one-third of all agents in criminal programs, to terrorism and intelligence duties.  Current and former officials say the cutbacks have left the bureau seriously exposed in investigating areas like white-collar crime, which has taken on urgent importance in recent weeks because of the nation’s economic woes.

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October 19, 2008 at 01:38 PM | Permalink

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Comments

Budgeting for financial crime enforcement, like budgeting for IRS agents, should be a zero cost endeavor. I suspect that these prosecutions pay for themselves to a very low threshold of marginal return.

Would something as simple as a dedicated enforcement cost as part of sentencing in these crimes solve the problem?

Posted by: ohwilleke | Oct 20, 2008 6:50:19 PM

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