A new study on gambling-driven crimes in the workplace

This study was based on a subset of data from our large-scale investigation of gambling-driven crime in Sweden. We focused on crimes that had been committed in workplaces and at non-profit organizations.

Abstract This study explored the characteristics and consequences of criminogenic problem gambling in Sweden. All verdicts (N = 283,884) delivered by Swedish general courts between 2014 and 2018 were subjected to a key word search for the term ‘problem gambling’ and its synonyms. Verdicts that met the search criterion (n = 1,232) were inspected manually and cases in which problem gambling clearly was the main cause for committing crime (n = 282) were analyzed quantitatively. The most common types of crimes were fraud and embezzlement (67%). Each year around 400 individuals, companies, and organizations became victims of gambling-driven crimes, with nonprofit organizations being the most severely affected. Those convicted for such crimes were older, and to a greater extent female and first-time offenders, compared to national statistics on crimes in general. This suggests that in Sweden, middle-aged women are a high-risk group for severe gambling problems that should be monitored particularly closely by gambling companies for indications of problematic gambling. We conclude that although crimes driven by problem gambling are relatively rare in the justice system, they bring considerable harm to victims and the perpetrators themselves.

Citation
Binde, P., Cisneros Örnberg, J., & Forsström, D. (2022). Breaking trust: A study of court verdicts in cases of gambling-driven economic crimes in the workplace. Nordic Journal of Criminology, Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1080/2578983X.2022.2139473

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