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1. Denial of responsibility.
“When a crime is committed, everyone can, with some degree of plausibility, point the finger at someone else.”
“The competitive structure of the marketplace also generate the perception that they have ‘no choice’ but to violate the law.”

2. Denial of injury.
“Most white collar criminals never meet or interact with those who are harmed by their actions.”

3. Denial of the victim.
“The offender believes he is in fact playing tit-for-tat.”
This can also come from a feeling of being undercompensated.

4. Condemnation of the condemners.
“Business executives dispute the legitimacy of the law under which they are charged.”
Including questioning government motivation in bringing the charges.

5. Appeal to higher loyalties.
“I did it for my family” is one of the most popular excuses for occupational crime.
This can also mean “employees may sometimes feel that they are excused from any accusation of criminality so long as their actions were undertaken for the sake of the firm rather than for reasons of self-interest.”

6. Everyone else is doing it.
Considering illegal conduct can give an unfair competitive advantage to the perpetrator, rivals may feel pressured to follow suit.

7. Claim to entitlement.
“People point to how much ‘good’ a company does (e.g., the number of satisfied customers, happy employees, etc.) as an excusing condition for violation of law.”

– Reference “Business Ethics and Moral Motivation: A Criminological Perspective” by Joseph Heath (Journal of Business Ethics, Vol 83, No 4)

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Business torts are civil wrongs that are committed by or against an organization.

Disparagement or Trade Libel or Product Disparagement or Slander of Title
“Business firms rely on their reputation and the quality of their products and services to attract and keep customers. That is why state unfair-competition laws protect businesses from disparaging statements made by competitors or others.”

Intentional Misrepresentation or Fraud or Deceit
“One of the most pervasive business torts is intentional misrepresentation.
Four elements are required to find fraud:
1. The wrongdoer made a false representation of material fact.
2. The wrongdoer had knowledge that the representation was false and intended to deceive the innocent part. (aka ‘scienter’)
3. The innocent party justifiably relied on the misrepresentation.
4. The innocent party was injured.”

Liability for harm as a result of foreseeable consequence.
Includes professional malpractice.

Liability without fault “is imposed for abnormally dangerous activities” such as storage of explosives and keeping of pets.
Product Strict Liability given in Restatement (Second & Third) of Torts: One who sells any product in a defective condition unreasonably dangerous to the user or consumer or to his property is subject to liability… A product is defective when, at the time of sale or distribution, it contains manufacturing defect, is defective in design, or is defective because of inadequate instructions or warnings…

Crimes prone to be committed by businesspersons are referred to as white-collar crimes.

Fradulent making or alteration of a written document that affects the legal liability of another person.
Examples: counterfeiting, falsifying public records, materially altering legal documents.

Fradulent conversion of property by a person to whom that property was entrusted.
(Note: differs from robbery, burglary, and larceny where property was not entrusted.)

Bribery is one of the most prevalent forms of white-collar crime.
Giving of money, property, favors, or anything else of value for a favor in return.

Threat to expose something about another person unless that other person gives money or property.

Obtaining title to property through deception or trickery.

reference Business Law by Henry Cheeseman

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In Strong Ethical Cultures…

Management and supervisors:
*Communicate ethics as a priority
*Set a good example of ethical conduct
*Keep commitments
*Provide information about what is going on
*Support following organizational standards

*Consider ethics in making decisions
*Talk about ethics in the work we do
*Set a good example of ethical conduct
*Support following organizational standards

– Eighth National Business Ethics Survey

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Salesperson duties in accordance with the Golden Rule

1. Warn customers of potential hazards

2. Refrain from lying and deception

3. Fully and honestly answer questions about what they are selling

4. Refrain from steering customers toward purchases they have reason to think will harm the customers (including financially)

– Thomas Carson

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Is it well-thought-out?

Is it just?

Is it scientific?

Is it imaginative?

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