the Crime of Illegal Enrichment – Legal Argument For and Against: A Comparative Study

Anwar M. S. Masadeh
Assistant Professor of Criminal Law – Law Dept. ABMMC – Doha – Qatar


Illegal enrichment is one of the aspects of administrative and financial corruption; it is an unreasonable and unjustified increase in the assets and property of a public official, or a member of his family or a legal representative, or an unduly large amount of debt and financial burdens disproportionate to the amount of income and salaries received, as well as the inability to justify the origins of such assets. This is a manifestation of corruption characterized by the difficulty of tracking, proof and accountability because of lack of evidences.
This “illegal enrichment” has provoked the United Nations to call upon member states to criminalize this corruption. However, this may be easier said than done due to particular issues regarding human rights. The most obvious potential for conflict between crimes of Illegal enrichment and human rights relates to the legal concepts of the presumption of innocence and the right of silence.
The importance of this issue is to have enough regulations to criminalize all acts of corruption. The legal argument about such issues was discussed, according, to scientific, analyzed and criticized methodology. The crime of “illegal enrichment” is examined by addressing it within the contexts of the theoretical perspective of human rights and the practical challenge of fighting corruption. International, regional, and national legislation, besides opinions of legal jurists and courts decisions from different legal systems were included as well.
Keywords: Corruption, Public Fund, Public Official, Enrichment, Confiscation.

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