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Right on Crime | January 14, 2012
Criminal laws, both state and federal, have dramatically increased in scope, expanding to cover traditionally non-criminal behavior such as ordinary, non-fraudulent business activities. In Texas, there are more than 1,700 statutory criminal offenses, including 11 felonies relating to harvesting oysters. Further, many such laws are overly vague and broad and do not require a culpable mental state for conviction. This panel at the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s 2012 Policy Orientation discussed the distinction between valid criminal sanctions and the criminalization of capitalism. The panelists included Texas Rep. Bill Callegari, Shannon Edmonds of the Texas District and County Attorneys Association, and Tim Lynch of the Cato Institute. Marc Levin of Right On Crime served as the moderator.[audio:http://www.policycast.com/TexasPolicy/audio/2012-PO-overcrim.mp3]