Philip Ndubueze


There is a substantial body of criminological literature that suggests the existence of a nexus between economic conditions and crime. This paper examines the relationship between economic recession and advance fee fraud in Nigeria. The basic premise of this paper is that economic recession may precipitate criminogenic thinking in some otherwise law abiding citizens. Such individuals may ultimately resort to crime like more subtle advance fee fraud as a survival strategy. The paper uses Merton’s (1938) Strain Theory to elucidate its argument. It recommends that during economic recession, apart from introducing palliatives for the poor, the government should develop an effective monitoring/control mechanisms that would ensure that such palliatives are not hijacked by “power mongersâ€, “political jobbers†and “political gatekeepersâ€. Also, the paper calls for some empirical inquiry into the nexus between economic recession and advance fee fraud in Nigeria.

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