Fraud Essay

2194 WordsSep 26, 20149 Pages
FRAUD Most of the theories on crime are based on behaviourism. Propounded by B.F. Skinner, the behavioural theory states that behaviour is conditioned as the individual interacts with the environment. Acts, whether criminal or not, can be described as the product of a person’s desires and his or her understanding of the consequences, meaning that an individual will perform the acts that gratify his or her desire without causing pain or deprivation. Basically, behaviourism holds the view that behaviour is learned, and it can therefore be modified. Biegelman (2013) notes that even though it is common knowledge that individuals and corporations commit fraud, the reasons why they do it are not fully understood. Understanding the motive of committing fraud helps in preventing it. Donald Cressey postulated the Fraud Triangle Theory to give an explanation as to why people commit fraud. His conclusion was that the propensity for fraud occurs when three critical elements are combined, and these include; motive, opportunity and rationalization (Biegelman, 2013). The strain theory states that various strains or stressors lead to increased likelihood of crime. Such strains lead to negative emotions, for example frustration and anger. The emotions thus create pressure to engage in corrective action, resulting in crime (Agnew and Brezina, 2010). Others theories have also been developed to explain the causes of fraud, for instance the theory of differential association by Edwin Sutherland, which holds that an individual in an appropriate situation takes part in criminal behaviour, such as fraud, only if they define the weight of such behaviour favourably, and find this to exceed the weight of unfavourable definitions of the behaviour. This paper analyses the causes of fraud, based on explanation of criminology theories. Analysis An Amalgam of Criminological Theories on

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