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Stephen Eastwood
November 2016.
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How can I commit the perfect crime?
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I assume you’re asking for a friend? Well, it very much depends on the type of crime. If you wanted to kill someone, for example, then you’d probably be best with a Health and Safety way of doing it.

Look at the number of people who die in the workplace every year. People often fall off a crane, electrocute themselves at work or are poisoned in a restaurant due to unhygienic practices, but there are very few prosecutions. It’s likely to be seen as an accident. And who’s ultimately responsible? Do you prosecute the line manager, senior management for the decisions that they’ve made, or the CEO of the company?

Most motoring offences also attract lesser sentences. Even if someone is killed, it’s usually not even deemed to be manslaughter.

“Committing a crime that’s unlikely to be reported would greatly increase your chance of getting away with it.”

Choosing a victim would also be a key consideration. There are so many sad cases where people go missing and they don’t get reported because they’re an itinerant, or don’t have anyone looking out for them. Fred and Rose West targeted many of their victims for this very reason.

Committing a crime that’s unlikely to be reported would greatly increase your chance of getting away with it. For instance, lots of burglaries don’t get reported because the victim doesn’t have home insurance, so what’s the point?

There’s also the issue of the likelihood of being caught, and the general risks involved. Remember the guy who pretended he drowned in his canoe to claim on the life insurance, and went to South America? He was eventually tracked down, as it’s quite hard to disappear these days. More traditional crimes, like bank robbery, are also on the wane, as they have very high risk for a not particularly high reward.

Ultimately, the best way to commit the ‘perfect’ crime today is probably on the internet. With online crime, we really have no idea what’s going on at the moment. The police have limited resources, which they tend to focus on drug trafficking through the dark net or child pornography. But they’re not all experts in coding, and it requires specialist knowledge that a general police officer won’t have.

The police are having to play catch-up all the time with internet crime. So if you had no criminal record, and you sat in your bedroom writing an amazing code to empty bank accounts – and then never committed another crime – that might be a good way of doing it.