Notes Social Studies

Common Crimes

Causes and Effects

Crime is any act that breaks the law of the land. A crime is a violation of criminal law. It is an offence that is punishable by law. They are sometimes collectively referred to as social problems. These could be as a result of urbanization or development of cities, increase in population, interaction among different ethnic groups, TV, etc. Common crimes in our society include the following:

  1. Examination Malpractice
  2. Cultism
  4. Prostitution
  5. Drug abuse
  6. Corruption
  7. Drug Addiction
  8. Internet fraud
  9. Armed Robbery
  10. Kidnapping
  11. Ritual Killing etc.

Causes of Common Crimes

  1. Bad Economy – some crimes occur due to bad economy resulting in loss of job, low standard of living, low level of unemployment, etc. the major effect of all these is poverty.
  2. Crave for Societal Recognition – this has made some youths to abandon their education and engage in robbery, thuggery, internet fraud, prostitution and other vices which can make them sudden millionaires
  3. Parental Neglect – many youths have been abandoned by their parents because of their rush for wealth, position, politics and career. Such children always associate with bad friends who influence them negatively.
  4. Peer Group Influence–Youths without good families are prone to being badly influenced by their friends.
  5. Corruption – Many school principals, school owners, teachers and government officials are very corrupt. They encourage all forms of examination malpractice by collecting bribes from students.
  6. Influence of internet and television – The existence of VCD and DVD machines allow youths to freely watch dirty films and all sorts of evil on the internet.

Effects of Common Crimes

Crimes affect individuals, family and the nation at large.

Effects of Crimes on Individual

  1. Loss of life – Those who engage in cultism, prostitution and HIV/AIDS and some other social vices often lose their lives immediately or eventually.
  2. Loss of dignity and reputation – Individuals who engage in kidnapping, prostitution and sexual immorality are never respected in the society.
  3. Unemployment – Those who engage in armed robbery or other criminal activities can never be employed by anybody.
  4. Frustration and regret – Criminals and those that are infected with HIV/AIDS through sexual immorality often live in frustration and regret.

Effects of Crimes on the Family

  1. Those engaged in criminal activities hardly have a settled home. Their spouses are likely to divorce them and have an adverse effect on the children.
  2. It brings shame and dents family image, reputation and name.
  3. Members of the family may have to live in abject poverty where the family winner becomes HIV/AIDS positive or sent to jail for murder.

Effects of Crimes on the Nation

  1. Those who engage in computer fraud, drug trafficking and other crimes are indirectly destroying the image of the nation internationally.
  2. Government spends quite a lot of money on curbing HIV/AIDS and supporting its patients. Government loses so much amount of money to corrupt official who divertsgovernment funds for personal uses.
  3. The number of able bodied men and women that could have been part of the Nigerian labour force has been reduced by armed robbery, untimely death cultism, etc.
  4. It makes members of the public feel insecure.


  1. What is crime?
  2. Mention five causes of crime.


  1. Mention five importance of friendship
  2. Mention three effects of crime on the nation


Fundamentals of Social Studies for Basic7 by Sola Akinyemi.Pages 106 -109, 120 – 122

Macmillan JSS Social Studies for Book 1 by M.A. Orebanjo and others.Pages 52 -57


  1. The following are common crimes except __ A. cultism B. murder C. prostitution D. reading
  2. One of the causes of common crimes is __  A. dancing B. poverty    C. education    D. ethnic
  3. Corruption is common among __ A. government officials    B. civil servant    C. politicians     D. all of the above
  4. One of the following is not a cause of cultism in Nigeria    A. greed    B. academic failure    C. drug abuse    D. contentment
  5. For some youths to end up becoming political thugs, hired assassins etc. is as a result of   A. untimely death    B. pride    C. high level of moral decadence     D. academic failure


  1. Mention five effects of crime on an individual.
  2. Mention three effects of crime on the family.