Crime, Law and Social Change published Matt Greife and Michael Maume’s paper “Do companies pay the price for environmental crimes? Consequences of criminal penalties on corporate offenders”


This paper is concerned with the negative collateral consequences monetary sanctions may have on companies that are prosecuted for violating federal environmental laws such as the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. Companies often claim fines for law violations will force them to lay off employees and possibly go bankrupt. Using the treadmill of crime theoretical lens, we employ a multivariate analysis on a unique data set of 169 companies to determine if their federal prosecutions are associated with negative collateral consequences. We find that some companies, upon being fined, are more likely to experience negative collateral consequences than others.