Perceptions on the causes of individual and fraudulent co-offending: Views of forensic accountants

Van Akkeren, Jeanette & Buckby, Sherrena (2015) Perceptions on the causes of individual and fraudulent co-offending: Views of forensic accountants. Journal of Business Ethics. (In Press)

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Individual and/or co-offenders fraudulent activities can have a devastating effect on a company’s reputation and credibility. Enron, Xerox, WorldCom, HIH Insurance and One.Tel are examples where stakeholders incurred substantial financial losses as a result of fraud and led to a loss of confidence in corporate dealings by the public in general. There are numerous theoretical approaches that attempt to explain how and why fraudulent acts occur, drawing on the fields of sociology, organisational, management and economic literature, but there is limited empirical evidence published in accounting literature. This qualitative inductive study analyses perceptions and experiences of forensic accountants to gain insights into individual fraud and co-offending in order to determine whether the conceptual framework developed from literature accurately depicts the causes of fraud committed by individuals and groups in the twenty-first century. Findings from the study both support and extend the conceptual framework, demonstrating that strain and anomie can result in fraud, that deviant sub-groups recruit and coerce members by providing relief from strain, and that inadequate corporate governance mechanisms both contribute to fraud occurring, and provide the opportunity for fraudulent activities to be executed and often remain undetected. Additional factors emerging from this study (the ‘technoconomy’, addiction and IT measures) were also identified as contributors to fraud, particularly relevant to the twenty-first century, and consequently, a refined conceptual framework is presented in the discussion and conclusion to the paper.

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ID Code: 91171
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: forensic accounting, fraud, corporate crime, governance, differential association, general strain theory
DOI: 10.1007/s10551-015-2881-0
ISSN: 0167-4544
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT (150300)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Accountancy
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2015 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Copyright Statement: The final publication is available at Springer via
Deposited On: 10 Dec 2015 23:30
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2016 04:58

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