CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Spapens on Decriminalization of Gambling and Cannabis in the Netherlands

Toine Spapens (Tilburg University) has posted Decriminalization as Regulation: The Gambling and Cannabis Markets in the Netherlands on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Decriminalizing an illegal market may be a useful strategy for reducing crime. It is also necessary, however, to have a clear understanding of the nature of the illegal market before undertaking such an endeavor. Experiences in the Netherlands show that decriminalizing illegal markets may indeed result in a substantial reduction of organized crime and other criminal activities, if the regulatory system is designed adequately. These experiences also show that such systems inherently lack flexibility and that criminals are usually quick to re-enter the market when unforeseen developments, particularly technical innovations and internationalization, create new illegal business opportunities.

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