Corporate and Financial Crime
This information is for the 2012/13 session.
Visiting Professor, Jonathan Fisher, QC
For MSc Accounting and Finance, MSc Criminal Justice Policy, MSc Criminology, LLM, MSc Law and Accounting, MSc Management and Regulation of Risk, MSc Regulation (Research) and MSc Regulation.
This course is capped at 30 students. Students must apply through Graduate Course Choice on LSE for You.
This course focuses on crime committed within the commercial and business environment, with particular emphasis on corporate financial crime. The law is responding to the challenges presented by financial crime; as the primary vehicle for commercial activity, unacceptable corporate practices are increasingly made the object of criminal sanction and causes of action in civil law.
Following an introductory session on the place of corporate and financial crime in the criminal justice system, the course considers the development of corporate criminal liability, directors' liability, corporations, sentencing corporate defendants and deferred prosecution agreements. The course explores the importance in terms of corporate governance of directors placing emphasis on the problems of corporate and financial crime by ensuring that the risks of corporate criminal activity are properly identified. Criminal offences directed at the enforcement of accounting transparency, recovery of losses by civil action, asset confiscation and the application of the UK anti-money laundering legislation are also considered. The course examines current perspectives in the detection, investigation and prosecution of corporate and financial crime, and the relationship between the global financial crisis and economic crime. This includes analysis of the role of the law enforcement agencies, the use of informants, surveillance and entrapment techniques, and a consideration of the tension between the exercise of invasive powers and privacy issues. The efficacy of the criminal process in the battle against financial crime is examined, with particular reference being made to corruption, tax offences, financial market offences, and cyber crime. Issues surrounding the debates over trial by jury, admissibility of evidence obtained by surveillance, informants and entrapment, and levels of sentencing are addressed. Recent initiatives in partnerships between the public sector and the private sector to tackle the prevention, detection and investigation of fraud are also considered.
Twenty two hour sessions weekly; the first half of the session is lecture format, the second half seminar format. Students have an opportunity to work with other students in the presentation of seminars. There are two revision sessions in the summer term.
Students are asked to submit a 2,500 word essay.
Reading is prescribed for each lecture and seminar. There are no core textbooks available for the course; however, all the reading material is available from resources easily accessible through LSE Moodle, LSE Electronic Library, the internet. For an understanding of the areas covered in the course, preliminary reading texts are - Green, Lying, Cheating and Stealing: A Moral Theory of White Collar Crime, 2005, Oxford University Press and Coffee, Gatekeepers: The Professions and Corporate Governance, 2006, Oxford University Press.
One three-hour examination (100%).