Jamaica is facing a growing problem with white-collar crimes, with the number of such crimes committed increasing in recent years. Despite the efforts of law enforcement agencies to combat these crimes, they continue to pose a significant challenge to the country. The results are contained in a recent quantitative study of major crimes data in Jamaica by Paul Bourne, Dennis Brooks and Vivienne Quarrie, which was published in the International Journal of Insights & Transformations in Law, Crime & Justice. The findings shed new light on the issue and suggest a need for more effective measures to prevent and deter these crimes.
White-collar crimes refer to nonviolent, financially motivated crimes committed by individuals in positions of trust or responsibility. They include embezzlement, fraud, and other forms of financial deception. The study found that from 2015 to 2019, there were 164 white-collar crimes reported in Jamaica, and 92.1% of them were cleared up by 2019. The number of arrests made for white-collar crimes also increased over this period, with a clear-up rate of 77.1%.
The study also revealed that there was a 500% increase in the number of white-collar crimes committed in Jamaica in 2017, followed by a 566.7% increase in 2018. The number of arrests made for these crimes also increased, with a 59.7% increase in 2022 over 2021. However, despite these efforts, there is still a need for more effective measures to prevent and deter these crimes.
The authors found that young people are more likely to be charged with white-collar crimes such as using unauthorized data, unauthorized use, and dealing with military decoration, with an average age of 21.0±4.2 years, 22.0±0 years, and 24.0±3.7 years, respectively. In contrast, older people are more likely to be arrested for crimes such as larceny by bailee and larceny by trick, with an average age of 39.8±11.4 years and 37.1±12.3 years, respectively. These findings suggest that age-specific prevention and intervention strategies could be developed to reduce white-collar crimes in Jamaica.
The results of the study also indicated that the highest percentage of white-collar crimes are committed in January (11.5%) and May (11.5%), while the highest percentage of arrests made by the police for these crimes is in June (11.2%). These findings could indicate a potential pattern in the commission and arrest of white-collar crimes in Jamaica. The local law enforcement community might wish to use this information to plan their resources and strategies more effectively, potentially increasing the number of arrests made during these months.
The months in which the most arrests were made were January (56%), May (55%), June (50%), March and October (44.8%), and December (42.3%). Meanwhile, the months with the lowest percentage of arrests for committed crimes were September (21.6%), February (28.1%), and August (28.9%). These findings suggest that there may be variations in the speed and effectiveness of law enforcement responses to white-collar crimes in Jamaica, depending on the month the crime was committed. Again, such information may be useful for law enforcement agencies to improve their strategies and resource allocation, with the aim of increasing the number of arrests made for white-collar crimes in the country.
The results of the study also indicated that the average age of perpetrators of white-collar crimes in Jamaica decreased from 52.5 years in 2015 to 31.2 years in 2022. This suggests that younger people are becoming increasingly involved in these types of crimes over time. The findings of this study provide valuable insights into the patterns and trends of white-collar crimes in Jamaica. The results suggest that law enforcement agencies have increased their efforts in recent years to combat these crimes, resulting in a higher arrests rate.
However, there is still need for more effective measures to prevent and deter these crimes, as well as more research into the underlying causes of this phenomenon. The results also highlight the importance of age-specific prevention and intervention strategies, as well as the potential benefits of allocating more resources during months when a higher number of crimes are committed. By addressing these issues, Jamaica can take steps towards reducing the number of white-collar crimes committed in the country and ensuring a safer and more secure future for its citizens.