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June 13, 2017

The Difference Between Blue Collar and White Collar Crimes

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When an individual commits a crime, they are committing an act in violation of the laws of the city, county, state, or country they are in, and will be prosecuted and punished according to the law. However, there are many different types of crimes.

Blue Collar Crime

The term blue collar crime was coined in the 1920s to refer to crimes committed by someone from the working or lower class of society because of the dark blue uniforms that many wore. An example derived from the early meaning of the term would be a worker getting caught stealing food because he is not paid enough. Today, blue-collar crimes can be committed by anyone and are typically crimes that are considered to be fueled by passion, rage, or other emotions. This may be because they are not carefully calculated and executed like a “more intelligent” crime would be. These kinds of crimes are those that cause injury to people or property, such as:

  • burglary and other property crimes
  • theft crimes
  • sex crimes
  • assault
  • drug crimes

White Collar Crime

White collar crimes, on the other hand, refer to those crimes committed by individuals with a higher social status or upper-level occupation. These people tend to work in high-level positions in offices and as part of a larger corporate structure, which requires a suit and white collared shirt. Today, white collar crimes are those crimes which are generally committed in a business setting. These are considered to be non-violent and are usually due to greed or the need to rise quickly in rank at the company. White collar crimes may be referred to as “paper crimes”. A few examples of white collar crimes include:

  • wire fraud
  • forgery
  • embezzlement
  • tax evasion
  • stock fraud
  • bribery

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