In order to understand the mechanisms that underlie involvement in white-collar crime on a personal level, 26 offenders convicted of a white-collar offence were interviewed. Building on theory and research from white-collar criminology, life-course criminology and moral psychology, findings show that a combination of criminogenic circumstances, weakened social bonds and adjusted moral ideas lead offenders down different pathways into white-collar offending. Although the process of crime involvement seems highly context-dependent in some instances, the interviews indicate that crime involvement is more commonly part of a long-running process, in which social bonds have weakened or moral ideas have been adjusted, which in turn influenced the decision to engage in the white-collar offence. Along with the limitations of the study and the directions for future research, the paper discusses the implications of the findings for white-collar crime research, in particular the complex role of morality in white-collar crime involvement.
- Social bonds
- White-collar crime