RICO and corporate crime / by kevin murray

The United States is a nation of seemingly endless laws, of which one of those laws, is entitled the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) which permits and facilitates prosecutorial agents in being able to successfully prosecute the leaders, instigators, and developers of criminal offenses, in which those higher ups have previously been able to shield themselves from being directly involved in a specific criminal offense by using underlings to perform those crimes, thereby effectively absolving themselves of such; but prosecutors are able through RICO, to find them accountable, as the enablers of a criminal enterprise and thereby its criminal actions.  Most notably, RICO has been used against certain high ranking members of organized crime, but it also has been used in other areas, though, mainly against known criminal enterprises.


There isn't any good reason why RICO, or a law similar in structure to RICO, should not now be passed into law, specifically created to go after corporations and corporate criminals.  In point of fact, corporations are found guilty all the time of malfeasance, fraud, money laundering, tax evasion, collusion, stock manipulation, and other assorted crimes; in which, those prosecuting those companies, often, when it is all said and settled, merely fine the corporation money, perhaps then monitor their behavior over a set period of time, perhaps revoke some monetary bonuses paid, but almost never hold a corporate individual personally liable to pay the incarcerated price for those crimes.


This signifies, in a nutshell, that the best crime to commit, is always going to be corporate crime, because those creating such a crime, know almost for a certainty, that they will have the best legal help that money can buy, that they personally will not have to suffer a day in jail or to even be in jeopardy of having this done to them, and at worse, might have to forfeit some monies earned, or possibly, lose their job or have their job suspended for a time.  On the other hand, by committing these crimes, an incredible lot of money can be personally made, so the downside as compared to the upside is rather minimal, but an act such as RICO that was constructed so as to be deliberately enforced against corporations, would be a true game changer, by making those higher ups that are responsible for the environment of that criminal activity, to have to face the music themselves for those crimes.


Of course, most every single large corporation would fight tooth and nail to see that any revamped RICO law would not ever apply to them; clearly indicating that the people that run these corporations, more often than not, are de facto, criminals.  For, the truth of the matter is, that corporations cheat, steal, and defraud the public out of billions of dollars each year, of which the true beneficiaries of such behavior, are those at the highest echelons of the corporate executive suites, who often feel intense pressure to do what they have to do, in order to meet quarterly sales and profit goals, in which, unable to accept failure, will often resort to whatever it takes to make those numbers.