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Statistics: Costs of Crime - The Social Cost Framework

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Typically, costs of crime are considered within a "social cost" framework. Economists refer to social costs as any resource-using activity that reduces aggregate well-being. Such a broad conceptualization considers issues well beyond the monetary costs of crime and includes a variety of resources often nonmonetary and sometimes not readily measurable. There are two broad categories of costs that can be considered when estimating the costs of crime. Direct costs are costs imposed by the offender and usually incurred by the victim. Indirect costs, on the other hand, stem from society's response to criminal activity. These include costs arising out of the desire to prevent crime, as well as costs arising from society's desire to punish known offenders and deter potential criminals.

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