Judicial valuation of the social costs of crime

Torre, Andrew and Sherwen, Scott 2013, Judicial valuation of the social costs of crime, Criminal law journal, vol. 38, pp. 37-50.

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Title Judicial valuation of the social costs of crime
Author(s) Torre, AndrewORCID iD for Torre, Andrew orcid.org/0000-0002-8701-5840
Sherwen, Scott
Journal name Criminal law journal
Volume number 38
Start page 37
End page 50
Total pages 14
Publisher Lawbook Co.
Place of publication Rozelle, N.S.W.
Publication date 2013
ISSN 0314-1160
Summary The true economic functions of the criminal courts are, first, to deter potential prospective offenders from committing offences, and in so doing reduce the total social costs of crime in the future; and secondly, to force the convicted offender to bear some of the costs, which the crime has externalised onto the victim(s) and wider society through retributive justice. These objectives are achieved through the sentencing function. Critics have lamented that too many extraneous factors are taken into account when setting penalties but the authors argue in this article that nevertheless these sentences are optimal because of the judges' comparative advantage. What is of great interest, and the focus of this article, are the implicit valuations of the social costs of crime that these sentences imply. Using the South Australia higher criminal courts as a case study, the authors estimate and utilise these judicial valuations to suggest a methodology for measuring the true economic value of the criminal courts. The analysis helps put into perspective the courts' very valuable contribution to social welfare.
Language eng
Field of Research 140299 Applied Economics not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 940403 Criminal Justice
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30051481

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Business and Law
School of Accounting, Economics and Finance
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