Corruption and Criminal Justice

Corruption and Criminal Justice

Bridging Economic and Legal Perspectives

Tina Søreide

The author addresses the role of criminal justice in anti-corruption by investigating assumptions in the classic law and economics approach and debating the underlying criteria for an efficient criminal justice system. Drawing on real life challenges from the policy world, the book combines insights from the literature with updated knowledge about practical law enforcement constraints. Political and administrative incentive problems, which may hinder the implementation of efficient solutions, are presented and debated.

Chapter 5: Principles versus pragmatism in law enforcement systems

Tina Søreide

Subjects: development studies, law and development, economics and finance, economic crime and corruption, law and economics, law - academic, corruption and economic crime, criminal law and justice, law and development, law and economics, law and society, politics and public policy, public policy


Criminal justice systems are subject to multiple expectations from politicians and society, and for this reason, it is difficult to define cross-cutting efficiency criteria. A narrow efficiency concept, however, easily leads to partial solutions, where progress in one area comes at the cost of other law enforcement objectives. This chapter outlines an efficiency concept in which crime deterrence, fair process, and value for money are all treated as imperative factors, and trade-offs between these aims are addressed. The concept offers a useful perspective on criminal justice difficulties, including how organizations in the private and public sector should be held criminally liable for corruption, and taking into consideration the prosecutor’s position in relation to efficient law enforcement.

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