Sociologist Edwin Sutherland first coined the term “white-collar crime” on December 27, 1939 during his presidential address at the fifty-second annual meeting of the American Sociological Society. Sutherland began his speech by arguing that much of what his colleagues understood about crime—namely, that it was restricted to the streets and largely committed by individuals in the lower social classes—was “misleading and incorrect.” According to Sutherland, the most serious criminal offences were not being committed by the poor or the “delinquent,” but rather by society’s most “respected business and professional men."
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"Why They Do It: Inside the Mind of the White-Collar Criminal, by Eugene Soltes."
Osgoode Hall Law Journal