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Criminal Law

Duke Law

White collar crimes

Articles 1 - 8 of 8

Full-Text Articles in Law

Culpability And Modern Crime, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2015

Culpability And Modern Crime, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

Criminal law has developed to prohibit new forms of intrusion on the autonomy and mental processes of others. Examples include modern understandings of fraud, extortion, and bribery, which pivot on the concepts of deception, coercion, and improper influence. Sometimes core offenses develop to include similar concepts, such as when reforms in the law of sexual assault make consent almost exclusively material. Many of these projects are laudable. But progressive programs in substantive criminal law can raise difficult problems of culpability. Modern iterations of criminal offenses often draw lines using concepts involving relative mental states among persons whose conduct is embedded …


Liability And Admission Of Wrongdoing In Public Enforcement Of Law, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2014

Liability And Admission Of Wrongdoing In Public Enforcement Of Law, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

Some judges and scholars have questioned the social value of the standard form in which the Securities and Exchange Commission settles its corporate enforcement actions, including the agency’s use of essentially unreviewed consent decrees that include no admission of liability or wrongdoing. This essay for a symposium on SEC enforcement provides an analysis of the deterrent effects of the three main components of settlements in public enforcement of law: liability, admission, and remedy. The conclusions are the following. All three components have beneficial deterrent effects. Cost considerations nonetheless justify some settlements that dispense with liability or admission, or even both. …


“White Collar” Crimes, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2014

“White Collar” Crimes, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

In addition to serving as a précis of the subject of ‘white collar’ crime, this chapter does three things. First, it deals with white collar crime’s longstanding definitional problem, rejecting several standard approaches and arguing that the category is most usefully understood according to the conceptual legal problem these offenses generate. White collar crimes, much more than other offenses, are committed in social settings in which undesirable behaviors are embedded within socially welcome conduct. Thus they are difficult to set apart and extract through clearly specified ex ante rules of law. Second, the chapter illustrates this definitional claim, and discusses …


Good Faith And Law Evasion, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2011

Good Faith And Law Evasion, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

Laws imposing sanctions can be self-defeating by supplying incentive and guidance for actors engaged in socially undesirable activities to reshape conduct to avoid penalties. Sometimes this is deterrence. But if the new activity, as much as the old, contravenes the normative stance of the legal project, it is a failure of law. The problem of evasion warrants response in many fields - not least in criminal law despite the frequent and too simple assumption that legality-related values require narrow prohibitions that unavoidably permit evasion. Three common responses to evasion have serious deficits. Foregoing control of evasion is a mistake if …


Inside-Out Enforcement, Lisa Kern Griffin Jan 2011

Inside-Out Enforcement, Lisa Kern Griffin

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Criminal Procedure Within The Firm, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2007

Criminal Procedure Within The Firm, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

It seems improbable that the theoretical and doctrinal framework of criminal procedure, developed mostly through a binary model of the individual and the state, would fit without modification in the tripartite model of the state, the firm, and the individual that characterizes the investigation and sanctioning of criminal conduct within legal entities. This intuition—which has been underexplored in spite of heated public debate about the state’s practices in this area—proves correct. I develop some components of a framework for understanding procedure for individual cases of criminal wrongdoing within firms and generating insights to guide reform. The process of pursuing individual …


Reforming Punishment Of Financial Reporting Fraud, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2007

Reforming Punishment Of Financial Reporting Fraud, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

Present sentencing law in criminal cases of financial reporting fraud is embarrassingly flawed. The problem is urgent given that courts are now regularly sentencing corporate offenders, sometimes (but sometimes not) to extremely punitive terms of imprisonment. Policing of fraud by multiple jurisdictions in a federal system means that principled sentencing law is necessary not only for first-order policy reasons but also for coordination of sanctioning efforts. Proportionality and rationality demand that sentencing law have an agreed scale for measuring cases of financial reporting fraud in relation to each other, a sound methodology for fixing a given case on that scale, …


Novel Criminal Fraud, Samuel W. Buell Jan 2006

Novel Criminal Fraud, Samuel W. Buell

Faculty Scholarship

The crime of fraud has been underdescribed and undertheorized, both as a wrong and as a legal prohibition. These deficits contribute to contention and uncertainty over the practice of punishing white-collar crime. This Article provides a fuller account of criminal fraud, describing fraud law's open-textured, common-law, and adaptive qualities and explaining how fraud law develops along its leading edge while limiting violence to the legality principle. The legal system has a surprising, often overlooked methodology for resolving whether to treat novel commercial behaviors as frauds: Courts and enforcers often conduct an ex post examination of whether an actor's mental state …