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WHEN POLICE officers intentionally misuse their authority for personal aims, it is termed police corruption. It is a problem that has occurred since modern policing evolved, and it is international in scope. While all criminal experts agree that it is an important social problem, there is less agreement about the extent of corruption.

Some individuals see the majority of police as corrupt, while others believe that only a handful of officers engage in corrupt activities. Three reasons limit our ability to determine the extent of police corruption: conceptual factors, methodological issues, and cultural factors.

In conceptual factors, there is great disparity in the ways that experts define police corruption. Some scholars follow strict definitions of corruption and suggest that any time a police officer violates the ...

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