From the President

By James D. Ratley, CFE


 When we first formed the ACFE, many businesses hardly mouthed the word “fraud,” let alone tried to prevent it. And when they did find “irregularities” they often weren’t quite sure what to do with them. That’s all changed. Thanks to the association, dedicated CFEs, and many academics, organizations now have a better chance of shaping environments to help deter fraud. However, these days we have the flip side of the situation: Many corporations have too many departments handling fraud with no coordinated efforts. In our cover article, “Who Owns Fraud? Uniting Everyone to Effectively Manage the Anti-Fraud Program,” Dan Torpey and Mike Sherrod contend that many companies struggle to determine who’ll be responsible for managing fraud examinations and fraud risks. Confusion can reign if a company doesn’t designate one person as the “owner” of its anti-fraud efforts, according to the authors. Learn how your organization can transform fraud-fighting chaos into a well-oiled, efficient process.  

 How severe should white-collar jail sentences be? In the article, “White-Collar Crime Punishment: Too Much or Not Enough?” author Frank S. Perri writes that a common argument made by opponents advocating lenient sentences for convicted white-collar criminals is that their crimes are non-violent property crimes, and many are first-time offenders who don’t fit the typical image of a street criminal. However, that would have meant that Bernie Madoff, who previously had never been convicted of a crime and had been a respected Wall Street investor, should have received much less than his 150-year prison sentence. We’ve seen many corporate executives with clean records destroy lives as they pursued avarice. Perri discusses many facets of this ongoing debate among criminologists and fraud examiners.

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