RICO, which stands for Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations, was originally enacted
to fight organized crime on the federal level but now is used on the state level also. A
racketeering activity is any activity that involves murder, kidnapping, gambling, arson, robbery,
bribery, extortion, dealing in obscene matter, or dealing a narcotic or other dangerous drugs,
which is chargeable under State law and punishable by imprisonment for more than one year.
The key of RICO is the freezing of assets in order to convict a racketeering organization.
There are two main ways crimes are measured in the criminal justice system. One way is the
Uniform Crime Reports; this is derived by the FBI from information provided by local law
enforcement. The Uniform Crime Report separates offences into two groups, Part I and Part II.
Part I offences are eight different crimes, four against a person which are criminal homicide,
forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault and four against property which are burglary,
larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. All of these eight crimes are called index crimes,
and are considered more serious offences so they are reported more often but the Part II, which
include all other crimes, is where there is a flaw in the Uniform Crime Reports. Due to the fact
that these crimes are not reported very often the data on these crimes are incorrect. Also with
some crimes if multiple crimes are committed at a time then they are reported as separate
offences but other crimes they are reported as a single offence.
The second way crime is measured is Victimization Surveys. These Victimization Surveys are
administered to individuals about crime and their experiences with crime. The most well known survey
administered is the National Crime and Victimization Survey put out by the Bureau of the Census and
the Bureau of Justice Statistics. This survey estimates the total number of offences committed by
surveying a large national sample. The NCVS includes rape, robbery, assault, theft, burglary, and motor
vehicle theft. The drawback to Victimization Surveys is that you cannot survey the entire population,
just a large sample group. Thus the data can be thrown off if the sample group is not a good
representation of the entire population.