Race and crime

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Race is one of the correlates of crime receiving attention in academic studies, government surveys, media coverage, and public concern. Because of the inconsistent definition of "race" across countries, it is difficult to compare the situation internationally. Race being a complex superposition of societal and biological factors, a given correlation of race and crime can not immediately be correlated to either environmental or genetic factors, leaving wide room for interpretation and both scholarly and political controversy.

In the United Kingdom, under the Criminal Justice Act 1991, section 95, the government collects annual statistics based on race and crime.[1][2][n 1]

More specific situations

Notable Cases

Edward Clary

UNITED STATES of America, Plaintiff, v. Edward James CLARY, Defendant
Edward Clary was an African American man who was arrested for possession with intent to distribute 67.76 grams of cocaine base.[4] Clary was 18 years old during that time, and a first time offender. He pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine and therefore sentenced to a minimum of 10 years in federal prison. However, Clary’s lawyers argued that the law is irrational and it is deliberate as to discriminate against African Americans, since approximately 93 percent of crack offenders were black. The argument continues, providing longer sentences for possession of crack cocaine than for the identical amount of powder cocaine.

See also


  1. Responsibility for this moved from the Home Office to the Ministry of Justice following changes in May 2007.[3]


  1. Criminal Justice Act 1991 – Section 95. legislation.gov.uk. Retrieved 27 September 2010.
  2. Marsh and Melville, p. 166.
  3. Criminal Justice Act 1991 – Section 95. Home Office. Retrieved 27 September 2010. Archived by the Internet Archive on 9 June 2007.
  4. http://www.leagle.com/decision/19941614846FSupp768_11498.xml/U.S.%20v.%20CLARY