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Organizational Opportunity and Deviant Behavior

Convenience in White-Collar Crime

Petter Gottschalk

Ever since Sutherland coined the term ‘white-collar crime’, researchers have struggled to understand and explain why some individuals abuse their privileged positions of trust and commit financial crime. This book makes a novel contribution to the development of convenience theory as a framework to understand and explain ‘white-collar crime’.
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Chapter 2: Economical dimension of convenience theory

Convenience in White-Collar Crime

Petter Gottschalk

Extract

The motive for white-collar crime is simply financial gain. The motive for financial gain, however, can vary. Crime might be a response to both possibilities and threats, and it might be a response to both strengths and weaknesses. An offense can enable exploration and exploitation of a business or a personal possibility that may otherwise seem unobtainable. An offense can enable avoidance of business threats or personal threats. An offense can make the business or the personal situation even stronger, and it can reduce and compensate for business or personal weaknesses. Financial gain as motive for white-collar crime can either benefit the individual or the organization. If illegal financial gain benefits the individual, it is labeled occupational crime. The individual benefits personally from illegal economical gain in a setting where his or her occupation enables white-collar crime. The motive for personal financial gain can vary in terms of possibilities and threats, and strengths and weaknesses.

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