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Information, Corruption and Optimal Law Enforcement

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  • Garoupa, Nuno
  • Jellal, Mohamed

Abstract

We consider the role of asymmetric information on the emergence of collusion between criminals and enforcers, in the framework proposed by Bowles and Garoupa (1997) and Polinsky and Shavell (2001). Our Paper proposes that the optimal criminal sanction for the underlying offense is not necessarily maximal. We achieve this result by coupling the criminal sanction for the underlying offense with a criminal sanction for corruption, both imposed on offenders. A higher criminal sanction for the underlying offense implies that the government must spend more resources to detect and punish corruption (since the likelihood of collusion increases). Thus, the government could reduce this sanction, save on detection, and increase the criminal sanction for corruption (in order to offset the negative effect on deterrence).

Suggested Citation

  • Garoupa, Nuno & Jellal, Mohamed, 2002. "Information, Corruption and Optimal Law Enforcement," CEPR Discussion Papers 3560, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3560
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    1. Mookherjee, Dilip & Png, I P L, 1995. "Corruptible Law Enforcers: How Should They Be Compensated?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(428), pages 145-159, January.
    2. 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.
    3. Polinsky, A. Mitchell & Shavell, Steven, 2001. "Corruption and optimal law enforcement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 1-24, July.
    4. Gary S. Becker & George J. Stigler, 1974. "Law Enforcement, Malfeasance, and Compensation of Enforcers," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(1), pages 1-18, January.
    5. Marjit, Sugata & Shi, Heling, 1998. "On controlling crime with corrupt officials," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 163-172, January.
    6. Chang, Juin-jen & Lai, Ching-chong & Yang, C. C., 2000. "Casual police corruption and the economics of crime:: Further results," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 35-51, March.
    7. Steven Shavell & A. Mitchell Polinsky, 2000. "The Economic Theory of Public Enforcement of Law," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 45-76, March.
    8. Bowles, Roger & Garoupa, Nuno, 1997. "Casual police corruption and the economics of crime," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 75-87, March.
    9. Jean-Jacques Laffont & Jean Tirole, 1993. "A Theory of Incentives in Procurement and Regulation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262121743.
    10. Garoupa, Nuno & Klerman, Daniel, 2004. "Corruption and the optimal use of nonmonetary sanctions," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 219-225, June.
    11. Besley, Timothy & McLaren, John, 1993. "Taxes and Bribery: The Role of Wage Incentives," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(416), pages 119-141, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Keith Blackburn & Kyriakos C. Neanidis & Maria Paola Rana, 2017. "A theory of organized crime, corruption and economic growth," Economic Theory Bulletin, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 5(2), pages 227-245, October.
    2. Kugler, Maurice & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Organized crime, corruption and punishment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1639-1663, September.
    3. Kugler, Maurice & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2004. "Organised crime, corruption and punishment," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0407, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    4. Gamba, Astrid & Immordino, Giovanni & Piccolo, Salvatore, 2018. "Corruption, organized crime and the bright side of subversion of law," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 159(C), pages 79-88.
    5. Ethan Bueno De Mesquita & Catherine Hafer, 2008. "Public Protection Or Private Extortion?," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(1), pages 1-32, March.
    6. Kugler, Maurice & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Organized crime, corruption and punishment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1639-1663, September.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    corruption; fine; information; probability of detection and punishment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

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

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