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Crime in The Wilson Quarterly

In the latest issue of The Wilson Quarterly, there’s a “Crime and Punishment” section featuring Philip J. Cook and Jens Ludwig‘s “Economist’s Guide to Crime-Busting” (gated), which considers the most “cost-effective way to control crime.” And Alex Tabarrok of Marginal Revolution writes on one of his favorite topics: bounty hunting. “Bail might be a rich man’s privilege were it not for the bail bondsman … In return for a non-refundable fee, usually around 10 percent of the bond, a bondsman will put up his own money with the court,” writes Tabarrok. “A typical bond might run $6,000. If the defendant shows up, the bondsman earns $600. But if the defendant flees, the bondsman potentially can forfeit $6,000. Potentially, because when a fugitive fails to appear, the court gives the bondsman a notice that essentially says, ‘Bring your charge to justice soon or your money is mine.'” [%comments]