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Criminal Solicitation, Entrapment, and the Enforcement of Law

  • Thomas J. Miceli

    (University of Connecticut)

This paper examines the optimal use of criminal solicitation as a law enforcement strategy. The benefits are greater deterrence of crime (due to the greater likelihood of apprehension), and the savings in social harm and apprehension costs as some offenders are diverted away from committing actual crimes through solicitation. The costs are the expense of hiring undercover cops and the greater likelihood of punishment. The optimal use of solicitation balances these factors. The paper also examines the justification for, and impact of, the entrapment defense, which exonerates those caught in a solicitation but otherwise not predisposed to commit a crime.

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File URL: http://web2.uconn.edu/economics/working/2005-17.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Connecticut, Department of Economics in its series Working papers with number 2005-17.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2005-17
Contact details of provider: Postal: University of Connecticut 365 Fairfield Way, Unit 1063 Storrs, CT 06269-1063
Phone: (860) 486-4889
Fax: (860) 486-4463
Web page: http://www.econ.uconn.edu/

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  1. Louis Kaplow & Steven Shavell, 1999. "Economic Analysis of Law," NBER Working Papers 6960, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. A. Mitchell Polinsky & Steven Shavell, 1999. "The Economic Theory of Public Enforcement of Law," NBER Working Papers 6993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. 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.
  4. Mookherjee, Dilip & Png, I P L, 1995. "Corruptible Law Enforcers: How Should They Be Compensated?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(428), pages 145-59, January.
  5. Harris, John R, 1970. "On the Economics of Law and Order," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(1), pages 165-74, Jan.-Feb..
  6. 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.
  7. Miceli, Thomas J., 1991. "Optimal criminal procedure: Fairness and deterrence," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 3-10, May.
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