Definitions of Crime Essay

1468 WordsJan 4, 20136 Pages
Definitions of Crime Defining crime is not as easy as one would perhaps think. Put your own definition of crime below: Most people would explain crime as being something that involves breaking the law. Criminologists have had a number of discussions as to where laws come from how do they become established? As with most academic areas there are a number of different view points. Most people would agree that behaviours that harm other people should be prohibited and therefore made criminal. For example murder is usually considered a crime in most societies, although there could be some examples of where killing another person is seen as justified. Should the intention and the age of the offender be taken into account? Rules about age vary from country to country for example to be criminally responsible in England and Wales you need to be 10 in Scotland it’s only 8 and in Sweden it’s as old as 15 before you are considered criminally responsible. The age of criminal responsibility as dropped in England and Wales following the James Bulger case where a three year old child was brutally killed by two ten year old children. The age was reduced from 14 to 10 here. Are there variations in crimes due to culture or history? Some actions are criminal in one culture but not in others. In Egypt and Sudan, female circumcision is legal, in England and many other countries it is prohibited. Private consumption of the drug marijuana has been decriminalised in the Netherlands but not in Britain. Activities that are classed as criminal in one period of history and not in others are called statutory crime (or mala prohibitum) These crimes don’t fall into a category of being right or wrong based on any natural or universal law rather they are based on current beliefs and opinions within society at any given period in history. This

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