Crime and Punishment: Assessing Deterrence Theory in the Context of Somali Piracy
41 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2014 Last revised: 4 Feb 2015
Date Written: December 4, 2014
This Article argues that increasing the threat of prosecutions is a necessary component to solving the problem of maritime piracy because the increased threat has the potential to deter Somali piracy. The Article recognizes that Somali pirates may experience certain “push” factors that increase the lure of piracy as a way to earn a living. For example, Somalia is a poor country characterized by weak political and legal institutions in the areas where piracy is most prevalent. Neither of these factors, however, detracts from the potential deterrent effect of a credible threat to punish, rather than release, those who hijack ships and take hostages for ransom.
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