• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Literature Review: The Impact of Heroin Prices on Robbery Trends

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Literature Review: The Impact of Heroin Prices on Robbery Trends Introduction In Australia, as in other western countries, illicit drug users often resort to crime in order to fund their habit. Heroin dependence has been a major factor in the escalation of robbery over the past four decades and there is a strong link between the rising price of heroin and increase in property crime1. Research has revealed that drug treatment, such as methadone clinics, has proved effective in decreasing the robbery rate; however there is a lack of literature on whether a decrease in the price of heroin would cause this decline. If the Australian Government were to legalise heroin, pure heroin would be available at a very low price in order to cut out the black market.2 Heroin would thus decrease in price by approximately 50 per cent.3 However, there is a lack of information available on whether this price decrease would subsequently reduce the property crime rate. Therefore, this literature review will be focused on four areas: 1. The link between drugs and crime 2. Why dependent heroin users commit crimes 3. The price of heroin and its effect on the crime rate 4. The effect that lower heroin prices would have on the crime rate 1. The link between drugs and crime There is an abundance of evidence which clearly reveals that dependent drug use and crime are causally connected. Maher et al states that in a sample of 202 heroin users, 70 per cent indicated that they derived a portion of their income from acquisitive property crime, which includes burglary, shoplifting and un-armed street robberies. ...read more.

Middle

Chilvers and Weatherburn discuss this problem, stating that there is a significant lack of national and international literature available on the price of heroin and its effect on the crime rate.24 Therefore, minimal research is available in this field. Despite this, the article by Donnelly et al was very thorough and provided evidence of this trend in Cabramatta and in New South Wales. Moreover, this article provided information on the method chosen and the exact formulas that were used to generate the conclusion that the steep price increase that occurred during Christmas 2000 was the determinative factor for the increase in robbery. 4. The effect that lower heroin prices would have on the crime rate Only three authors raise the issue of whether a decrease in the price of heroin would lead to a decline in the crime rate. Mukherjee stated that it is the high cost of heroin that causes addicts to commit crime, and 'the implication is, therefore, that a decrease in price may result in a decrease in property crime.'25 However, he fails to substantiate this; rather he merely notes that there has been an increase in the price of heroin, and an increase in robbery rates. He does not discuss this issue further, nor does he generate a conclusion as to why this may occur. The two other articles commissioned the Salvation Army26 and the Dutch Drug Policy Foundation,27 discuss legalisation and its impact on the price of heroin and crime. However, because they are exploring the effect of legalisation on the crime rate, they fail to adequately explore the issue of price of heroin and its correlation with the crime rate. ...read more.

Conclusion

(2001), The Federation Press, Sydney, at 1079. 12 Mukherjee, S. and Jorgensen, L. (n 7) 13 Mukherjee, S. and Jorgensen, L. (n 7) 14 Maher, L. Dixon, D. Lynskey, M. and Hall, W. (n 4) at 1078. 15 Maher, L. Dixon, D. Lynskey, M. and Hall, W. (n 4) 16 McBride, D. and McCoy, C. (n 8) 17 The heroin drought of 2000 will be further discussed in Section 3. Donnelly, N, Weatherburn, D. and Chilvers, M. (2004), The Impact of the Australian Heroin Shortage on Robbery in NSW, NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, Sydney. 18 The Salvation Army Rehabilitation Services Command and Community Relations Department, (n 9) 19 Packer, H, The Limits of the Criminal Sanction, (1968) in Brown, D. et al, Criminal Laws: Material and Commentary on Criminal Law and the Process of Law in NSW. (2001), The Federation Press, Sydney, at 1083. 20 Packer, H, (n 19) 21 Donnelly, N, Weatherburn, D. and Chilvers, M. (n 17) 22 Donnelly, N, Weatherburn, D. and Chilvers, M. (n 17) 23 Chilvers, M. and Weatherburn, D. (n 1) 24 Chilvers, M. and Weatherburn, D. (n 1) 25 Mukherjee, S. and Jorgensen, L. (n 7) at 228. 26 The Salvation Army Rehabilitation Services Command and Community Relations Department, (n 9) 27 Van der Haar, J, (n 3) 28 These are the two most recent examples of numerous countries that have been trialing various heroin treatment programs. The Salvation Army Rehabilitation Services Command and Community Relations Department, (n 9) 29 Chilvers, M. and Weatherburn, D. (n 1) 30 Chilvers, M. and Weatherburn, D. (n 1) Elizabeth Herbert - 40328104 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Crime & Deviance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Crime & Deviance essays

  1. Free essay

    local trends in crime in Britain

    According to Young (1975) the social world is complex and constantly changing. Theories that apply now may be redundant in the future. What works for one type of crime may not work for another. Therefore, a flexible theory is needed to be able to deal with a changing world and the different aspects of crime.

  2. Drawing on examples from your reading, explore the medias impact on the fear of ...

    Journalism is supposed to be an informative way of communicating with the public on key issues, yet why is it time and time again the media abuse their position and make every attempt to cash in on others' sorrow. The media did not stop at taring the reputation of those

  1. Examine the main trends in the birth and death rates in the UK since ...

    If woman get pregnant accidently, it is now easier and more socially acceptable to get access to abortions, and contraception - meaning that woman have more control of their fertility. The fall in the birth rate is also because of the decline in the infant mortality rate (IMR), the IMR

  2. This paper attempts to analyse Bacceria's (1764) "On Crimes and Punishment" article. In order ...

    Since offenders are regarded as entirely responsible for their actions, they deserve to be punished. Thus, the law should seek to deter both the individual and others from engaging in legally offensive behaviour through the threat of inflicting pain (White and Perrone 2000, Hazlehurst 1996).

  1. Describe law and order in London in the late 19th century

    If the ripper wrote the graffiti, it would show that the ripper was more conscious than thought and would show that he contemplated over religion and communities. Conversely, this also led to many different theories of the identity of the ripper. The graffiti caused much controversy between the two forces.

  2. It has been claimed that hate crimes are an 'Orwellian response to prejudice'. How ...

    However in 2003 the Terrorism Act gave judges the power to increase the sentence for homophobic crimes if they felt it was necessary. The way in which hate crime is currently dealt with is the underlying factor for debates within this topic.

  1. Inequalities within the 'Criminal JUSTICE System/Process'

    the unemployed, the unemployable, the homeless, the physically ill and the mentally disturbed.' (Carlen 1994 p309). 'The usual suspects' (Young, male, disproportionately black, lower social class: Coleman and Moynihan 1996 p91) Two main issues contribute to inequality: * Our dominant definition of 'the crime problem', and the knock on effect to what sort of people cause it.

  2. public law

    Amazingly, little if any. No significant studies have been conducted in the United States. In fact, the Bureau of Justice Statistics in their annual National Crime Victims Survey does not specifically collect data about crimes against persons with disabilities." (Thomas, 1998) S. DeWine directly assessed the question of need for the policy.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work