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Wrongful Convictions Do Lower Deterrence


  • Nuno Garoupa
  • Matteo Rizzolli


The conventional result of the theory of the public enforcement of law is that wrongful convictions of innocents are detrimental to deterrence. This proposition has been challenged recently. In some cases, wrongful convictions do not jeopardize deterrence, because they influence equally the innocent and the guilty. Therefore deterrence does not change. We show that, in general, wrongful convictions do lower deterrence. We prove that wrongful convictions do not jeopardize deterrence only in very limited circumstances or under unlikely assumptions.

Suggested Citation

  • Nuno Garoupa & Matteo Rizzolli, 2012. "Wrongful Convictions Do Lower Deterrence," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 168(2), pages 224-231, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(201206)168:2_224:wcdld_2.0.tx_2-y

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters,in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Shastitko. Andrey & Golovanova, S. V., 2016. "The Role of the Mediator in Complex Capital Projects," Working Papers 1449, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    2. Natalia Pavlova & Andrey Shastitko, 2014. "Effects Of Hostility Tradition In Antitrust: Leniency Programs And Cooperation Agreements," HSE Working papers WP BRP 58/EC/2014, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    3. repec:nos:vgmu00:2017:i:3:p:51-71 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eee:rujoec:v:2:y:2016:i:4:p:375-401 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Šastitko, Andrej E., 2013. "Effects of third party errors," EconStor Preprints 121747, ZBW - German National Library of Economics.
    6. Shastitko, Andrey, 2014. "Effects of the Third Party Errors," Published Papers re9021, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration.
    7. repec:scn:vgmu00:2017:i:3:p:51-71 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Avdasheva, Svetlana & Kryuchkova, Polina, 2015. "The ‘reactive’ model of antitrust enforcement: When private interests dictate enforcement actions – The Russian case," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 200-208.

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    JEL classification:

    • K4 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior


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