Discussion on Victimless Crime

First, the term victimless crime refers to a situation whereby an individual commits an offense, but the crime committed has no impact on another person, society or the properties of other people (Boyes-Watson, Krumholz, & Rich-Shea, 2014). Therefore, according to the law, victimless crimes only affect the people doing the illegal acts. In other words, there are no victims in such offenses. According to my opinion, the term victimless crime is misleading, and I think there should be no such a thing. From the scenario, the single mother of three young children was arrested because she possessed a controlled substance. In spite of drug abuse being categorized as a victimless crime, the mother would sometimes let her anger on the children after abusing the drugs. Therefore, in this scenario the crime has resulted in victims. The children are victims of frustrations from their mother after abusing the drugs. Moreover, the lives of the children were in danger. It will not be ideal if the law considers this case as a victimless crime.

The law of criminalizing drugs has been termed as a way of punishing people’s decisions to live that kind of life. According to opinions from other scholars, it is some sort of lifestyle that does not affect the legal rights of the other people. Therefore, when people use illegal drugs and they do not affect other people around them. The situation is termed as a victimless crime. I totally disagree with such an opinion. However, if an individual abuses drugs to the extent he/she has an unfavorable effect on the society, family members or himself/herself, and then this would result in victims. In other words, the drug users are causing a lot of damages to their bodies and people may argue the users to be victims. However, the laws to criminalize drugs have been drafted and passed by the non-users, and they only consider the users of drugs like the only victims. It is wrong since the general public becomes the victims in such situations. It is because drug addicts have a tremendous effect on the society.

On the other hand, it is clear that any crime committed would result in victims. They are people who have been affected directly by the offender’s criminal act (Regoli, & Hewitt, 2010). The misconduct has led to the intervention by the society to sustain the victims. Moreover, victims are going through challenges when trying to claim their rights and it will be good if the community helps. They have to ensure that they use correct channels and get their rights honored through the court of justice. Therefore, courts should not bar victims from getting their rights by failing to determine who qualify as victims in the crime scenes. Most of the time, the courts neglect the victims in the name of considering the case as a victimless crime.

The government should only criminalize an illegal act done by a person if only it could lead to secondary damages and for which victimless crimes are on it. For example if a person abuses drugs, then there is a possibility of the children getting harm or the user can go to other crimes. Also, for a case like prostitution, the prostitutes have high chances of spreading sexually transmitted disease. The people affected here are those around and the society as a whole. Most of the prostitutes are illiterate since they are from poor backgrounds. Therefore, they have fallen victims of opportunists.

The society will be affected if the criminals are confined for an act that fall under the victimless crime charges. When the inmates are released to the society after their prison periods are over, they will be unable to support their families. Therefore, they will be relying on social programs. Other may decide to go back to criminal activities. During their incarceration, some of these people were limited to receiving education and building their skills (Regoli, & Hewitt, 2010). What they could only do is to learn more criminal tricks and hence they pose trouble to the society. Therefore, it would be good if the government establishes learning institutions inside the prisons. It will help the inmates to learn especially on informal sectors.

The other impact of victimless crimes is the loss of tax revenue. The government will lose the revenue that could have been obtained through the activities that are considered illegal. If they had to legalize the sale of drugs, online gambling, and prostitution, then a lot of revenues would be collected (Boyes-Watson, Krumholz, & Rich-Shea, 2014). Therefore, the society will benefit since there will be enough resource allocation. However, the government has moved forward, and it has legalized such drugs as marijuana in certain states in the USA. Also, the society will lose the tax contribution that should have been made by the prisoner. When criminals are jailed, the kind of tax they were paying through buying goods and paying for various services will no longer exist. Therefore, the general public and the society will lose and fall victim of circumstances.



Boyes-Watson, C., Krumholz, S. T., & Rich-Shea, A. M. (2014). Crime and justice: Learning through cases.

Regoli, R. M., & Hewitt, J. D. (2010). Exploring criminal justice: The essentials. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

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