Law: Ethics Lesson

Making criminals fight crime

Creating a punishment to fit a crime is not always easy. All too often, the judicial choices come in two basic modes: prison terms or fines. But some judges have experimented with inventing appropriate alternatives. Federal Judge Warren Urbom last week came up with one of the most dramatic efforts to date. The Missouri Valley Construction Co. of Grand Island, Neb., had pleaded guilty to bid-rigging charges and faced a $2 million fine. Instead, at the company's suggestion, Urbom sought to do something more concrete about the bid-rigging crime. Missouri Valley will now pay a $325,000 fine, but...

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