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Supreme Court Judge Hima Kohli Calls for Advanced Technology to Combat White-Collar Crime

White-collar crimes pose significant challenges to the judicial and economic systems, necessitating a “multipronged and nuanced” approach, stated Supreme Court Judge Justice Hima Kohli on Wednesday

Emphasizing the role of advanced technology in tackling these crimes, she highlighted the need for leveraging data analytics, artificial intelligence, and blockchain to enhance the detection, investigation, and prosecution of white-collar offenses.

Speaking at an event organized by the Centre for Discourses in Criminal and Constitutional Jurisprudence on ‘Judicial Perspective on Economic Offences and Corporate Malfeasance’, Justice Hima Kohli underscored the complex nature of white-collar crime in India.

“White-collar crime presents a formidable challenge to India’s judicial and economic systems, necessitating a nuanced and comprehensive response. Fighting against this crime requires a multipronged approach,” she said. “The judiciary, supported by robust legislative frameworks and dedicated institutional mechanisms, is pivotal in addressing these offenses. Establishing specialized courts with experts in financial and economic crimes is essential for timely and effective adjudication.”

Justice Kohli differentiated between traditional and white-collar crimes, noting that traditional offenses often arise from emotions like anger or revenge and may involve meticulous planning with the help of individuals with criminal histories. In contrast, white-collar crimes are driven by greed, characterized by careful planning and execution, often with professional assistance.

“While white-collar crimes inflict reputational or financial damage and lead to substantial financial penalties when detected, traditional crimes result in physical harm and emotional damage,” she noted. “However, both types of crimes have a profound effect on the victims and society at large.”

Justice Kohli also stressed the importance of robust cybersecurity measures, effective management of third-party risks, and fostering a compliance culture in financial institutions to combat digital frauds. She advocated for digital case management systems to streamline judicial processes, reduce delays, and improve efficiency.

“Continuous training and capacity building for law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and judges are critical for staying ahead of the evolving nature of these crimes,” she added. “Strengthening these areas can help build a more resilient and transparent legal system that upholds justice and integrity, mitigates the impact of white-collar crime, and fosters a society where trust and accountability are paramount.”

These insights reflect a comprehensive strategy to address the multifaceted nature of white-collar crime in India, emphasizing the need for advanced technology, specialized expertise, and continuous training to uphold justice and integrity.

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