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Petter Gottschalk

Investigative forensic auditors from global accounting firms and local law firms are in the business of examining suspicions of misconduct and crime for their clients. Reports written by forensic auditors and fraud examiners for their clients after an investigation are interesting for white-collar crime research as described in this chapter. Reports of investigations have reconstructed past events and sequences of events that can open up for insights into potential financial motives, potential organizational opportunities, and potential personal willingness for deviant behavior, which are the three dimensions in the convenience triangle. Furthermore, reports of investigations can illustrate the quality of private policing when there is a suspicion of misconduct and crime. This chapter presents an investigative forensic audit conducted by global accounting firm PwC for the Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation in Nigeria into crude oil revenues generated by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation that the oil company allegedly withheld or unremitted to the Federal Accounts.

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Petter Gottschalk

Investigation reports written by independent attorneys, auditors, accountants, and detectives are interesting for white-collar crime research as described in this chapter. Investigation reports present reconstructions of past events and sequences of events that can open up for insights into motives, opportunities and willingness, which are the three dimensions of the convenience triangle. The theory of convenience suggests that white-collar misconduct and crime occurs when there is a financial motive benefitting the individual or the organization, an organizational opportunity to commit and conceal crime, and a personal willingness for deviant behavior. The case study in this chapter is concerned with a report of investigation into the accounting scandal at Toshiba. Evidence of all three dimensions in the convenience triangle can be found in the report and is presented in this chapter.

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Petter Gottschalk

Private policing in the area of crime investigations can provide valuable insights into misconduct cases as illustrated by Wells Fargo’s sales practices investigation report. By application of the theory of convenience, it is possible to identify individual and organizational motives, organizational opportunities, and personal willingness in white-collar abuses of bank sales practices. The investigation report of 113 pages can be a valuable document if the public criminal justice system decides to look into the case of potential offenders that may have violated specific statutory provisions. The legitimacy of private policing of financial crime is a topic of enduring importance. Fraud examiners do often not only investigate, they sometimes also prosecute, and sometimes even pass a verdict in their reports of investigations on suspected individuals. This contradicts the practice of criminal justice in democratic societies, where clear distinctions are made between investigation, prosecution, and sentencing in court. Making it even worse in terms of lack of legitimacy, fraud examiners sometimes apply methods and procedures that are not only unethical, but also illegal.

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Petter Gottschalk

Investigation reports written by independent attorneys, auditors, accountants, and detectives are interesting for white-collar crime research as described in this chapter. Investigation reports present reconstructions of past events and sequences of events that can open up for insights into motives, opportunities and willingness, which are the three dimensions of the convenience triangle. The theory of convenience suggests that white-collar misconduct and crime occurs when there is a financial motive benefitting the individual or the organization, an organizational opportunity to commit and conceal crime, and a personal willingness for deviant behavior. The case study in this chapter is concerned with a report of investigation into the aggressive sales methods and inappropriate accounting practices at Fuji Xerox in New Zealand. Evidence of all three dimensions in the convenience triangle can be found in the report and is presented in this chapter.

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Petter Gottschalk

Investigation reports written by independent attorneys, auditors, accountants, and detectives are interesting for white-collar crime research as described in this chapter. Investigation reports present reconstructions of past events and sequences of events that can open up for insights into motives, opportunities and willingness, which are the three dimensions of the convenience triangle. The theory of convenience suggests that white-collar misconduct and crime occurs when there is a financial motive benefitting the individual or the organization, an organizational opportunity to commit and conceal crime, and a personal willingness for deviant behavior. The case study in this chapter is concerned with a report of investigation into fraudulent methods and inappropriate accounting practices at Olympus Corporation in Japan. Evidence of all three dimensions in the convenience triangle can be found in the report and is presented in this chapter.

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Petter Gottschalk

After an oil spill in the Gulf, British Petroleum had to compensate victims of the accident. The total compensation was $11 billion. As suggested by the theory of convenience, a financial motive, an organizational opportunity and a personal willingness can explain deviant behavior by members of the elite in society to gain from the compensation program. In the case of the BP Deepwater Horizon settlements, attorneys were both presenting claims on behalf of victims as well as approving claims on behalf of petroleum company BP. It was a profitable assignment for attorneys, and some attorneys made it even more profitable for themselves by kickbacks and by both applying for and approving compensations. As illustrated in this case study, a report of investigation can serve as an empirical basis for the study of convenience theory.

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Petter Gottschalk

We address the following research question in this chapter: How can convenience theory in terms of motive, opportunity, and willingness explain deviant behavior in the case of public procurement of health care services in a Norwegian municipality? This research is important, as it can identify motives at the individual and organizational level, opportunities at the organizational and societal level, and willingness at the individual level, even when there is not necessarily corruption involved. The application of convenience theory is by no means an excuse for violations of laws and regulations. Rather, this chapter demonstrates where prevention of misconduct and crime needs attention. It is particularly at the organizational level, where opportunity structures tend to enable commitment and concealment of illegitimate financial transactions. When auditing and other forms of control are de facto absent, where the blame game occurs, and where it is impossible to trace events because documents and emails have disappeared, then misconduct and crime become convenient options.

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Petter Gottschalk

Law enforcement in the criminal justice system seems particularly challenging when it comes to executive deviance resulting in white-collar misconduct and crime. Suspects have access to valuable resources to commit and conceal their offenses. To enable professional law enforcement, there is a need to improve our understanding of executive deviance. When the organizational opportunity structure has elements of lacking controls, inappropriate audits, and manipulated reporting, then misconduct and crime is likely to occur, given a financial motive and a personal willingness for deviant behavior. Opportunity, motive, and willingness are the three dimensions of the theory of convenience. This chapter applies the theory of convenience to a number of reports of investigations by fraud examiners to provide insights into executive deviance.

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Petter Gottschalk

There are several avenues for future research into the convenience triangle for white-collar crime. Both theoretical expansion and empirical study are possible and indeed needed. In the motivational dimension, it is all about illegitimate financial gain. We have emphasized strain and pain, as well as greed and status, but what about excitement, adventure, and fun to commit crime. In the organizational dimension, we have emphasized access to resources, but what about manipulation, threats, and concern for others. In the behavioral dimension, we have emphasized neutralization and self-control, but what about excitement, adventure, and fun to commit crime.

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Petter Gottschalk