Incidence of Crime
The Baathist regime introduced a variety of laws, of which the
most important was a 1969 penal code that expanded the definition
of crime to include acts detrimental to the political, the economic,
and the social goals of the state. Baathist hegemony in the political
sphere, for example, was enforced by a law making it a crime to
insult the state or its leaders publicly. Economic goals were
also enforced by several laws--a 1970 trade regulation, for example,
made both the selling of goods at prices other than those fixed
by the state and the production of inferior products felonies.
The government's free education program was enforced by a law
making it a crime to refuse to participate.
The more traditionally defined kinds of crime, including theft,
forgery, bribery, the misappropriation of public funds, and murder,
followed the pattern of most developing states. No adequate statistical
data for Iraq were available in 1987, however. Amnesty International
reported in 1986 that degrading treatment of prisoners, arbitrary
arrests, and denial of fair public trials were common. In 1985
and in 1986, several highranking officials, including the mayor
of Baghdad, were tried for corruption, were found guilty, and
were executed. Presumably, the purpose of these sentences was
to make it clear that criminals would be punished, regardless
of their status.
Data as of May 1988