If a heavily famous person (let's suppose a famous football player [I don't call it soccer]) kills an other ordinary civilian and there's proof of such an act, will he get away with his crime, realistically talking, by simply being wealthy or will he be landed to jail like everyone else?

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    That really depends on the culture and the country. In many countries: the richer you are the better the evidence needs to be to have you convicted, but if the evidence is good, you are going to jail. Different rules apply in dictatorships or countries where laws are easily bent to suit the powers at be. And interesting example is en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O._J._Simpson_murder_case – Hilmar Jan 2 at 13:31
  • To whit, O.J. Simpson was incarcerated for the duration of his murder trial which was the most lengthy criminal trial in U.S. History. There's quite a few cases of U.S. sports stars getting arrested for and standing trial for Murder and other crimes. The most recent example was a New England (Play in Boston but the geographic area represents several states) Patriots player who was convicted of Murder a few years back – hszmv Jan 2 at 13:43
  • Given the clarifications the op has made in chat and in response to my answer, this question is essentially unanswerable due to the criteria and limitations the op is applying, so therefore I am voting to close. – Moo Jan 3 at 0:02
  • Ray Lewis, an actually footballer, was charged with and acquitted of murder. Did he get away with a double homicide? Some feel that he did. – Pete B. Jan 7 at 16:17

A rich person can afford the most expensive defence lawyers. The most expensive defence lawyers can find evidence that a cheaper lawyer might miss. They should be better at finding previous cases that are beneficial to the case. They should be better at convincing a jury that there is doubt about your guilt than a cheaper lawyer. And the cheaper lawyer, working full time on your case, will be more likely to be able to help you than a lawyer paid by the state who covers many more cases.

If the rich person committed a crime and there is good evidence, their lawyer can't bend the law and get them off the hook that way. Money can still help you. If you punched me in the face, and I had the choice: I can call the police and report it and you go to jail for six months, or I take a million dollars and keep quiet. Most people would take the money. (A good lawyer will be able to tell Mr. Rich what he can do legally to get out of trouble, what would be illegal, and what they can get away with).

In Germany and other countries, to make sure rich people can't just pay their way out of problems, minor offences like causing a traffic accident may get you a conviction for example for "20 day sentences". Which means you have the choice of going to jail for 20 days, or paying 20 days income (and not your "official" income, but your real income). So Bill Gates would have to pay an amount of money that is just as painful for him as the much smaller payment I would have to make would be for me.

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    Just being able to hire your own lawyer instead of relying on the public defender is a huge advantage, not because public defenders are bad lawyers but because public defenders are usually overworked and thus have a tendency to advise plea deals to get cases off their docket. – IllusiveBrian Jan 2 at 16:03
  • Paying someone not to report a crime is itself a crime. That said, it happens all the time. – Dale M Jan 2 at 21:21
  • @DaleM I suppose it's hard to prove that A paid victim B not to report a crime, instead of B not reporting it because he didn't want anyone to go to jail, and A giving B a huge present because he is grateful and ashamed of his actions. – gnasher729 Jan 2 at 23:15
  • @gnasher729 in many countries, itโ€™s a crime not to report a crime. – Dale M Jan 2 at 23:54
  • @DaleM In many situations it makes your life a lot saver. – gnasher729 Jan 3 at 0:02

Given the number of Premier League players in the UK arrested and prosecuted for various relatively (to your example) minor criminal acts over the years, including driving under the influence of alcohol, speeding, assault, sexual offences etc, I think there would be no problem prosecuting them in the UK for murder.

Examples include:

Other general examples include:

  • Lord Jeffery Archer - a senior politician, worldwide successful author, jailed for perjury
  • Jonathan Aitkin - politician, jailed for perjury
  • Fiona Onasanya - Member of Parliament, jailed for perverting the course of justice
  • Gary Glitter - singer, entertainer, jailed for child sex offences
  • Fred Talbot - famous TV personality, failed for indecent assault
  • Max Clifford - major UK political publicist, jailed for sexual offences

Obviously this is just for the UK jurisdiction.

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  • My example was about heavily famous and skilled football players (Ronaldo, Messi, Balotelli, Zlatan). I was not mentioning every player playing in a major league, but that's my fault I did not specify, you answered accordingly. – abdul Jan 2 at 23:04
  • @abdul several of the players in the examples given are of the level you want - Ian Wright, Joey Barton, Eric Cantona etc etc etc. I can add more examples if you want, such as Wayne Rooney, Vinnie Jones etc. – Moo Jan 2 at 23:10
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    Take the former UK minister Chris Huhne. His wife took the blame when he was accused of speeding. Then they got divorced and she told the police as revenge. Both went to jail for perverting the course of justice. To avoid a speeding fine. – gnasher729 Jan 2 at 23:20
  • The UK judicial system has no problems prosecuting famous or influential people, indeed it seems to revel in it ๐Ÿ˜‚ – Moo Jan 2 at 23:22
  • In Spain or Italy these kind of things don't occur, maybe because the systems are sneaky. Here in Italy if a rich person and a poor person engage in a dispute (not necessarily famous), be sure that the poor person will be taking the blame no matter what proofs the poor has in favour – abdul Jan 2 at 23:37

I decided to use google and found this lovely site:


Number eight on the list: Bernie Madoff. Jeffrey Epstein supposedly had a wealth of $2 billion, so he didn't make it on the list. But he shows that having more than $800 million not only doesn't keep you out of jail, sometimes it doesn't even guarantee you get out alive.

And then there are Domenico Dolce & Stefano Gabbana, convicted for tax evasion. Probably the most well-known names on the list in Europe and USA, possible excepting Madoff and Epstein.

But richest man in jail is Eike Batista, once worth $30 billion.

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