How to Use "Crime" in a Sentence

Share this

crime is an illegal action or activity for which a person can be punished by law.

  1. [uncountable]:  illegal activities in general:

It would be a crime to travel without passport.

  1. [countable]:  an illegal action, which can be punished by law:

He insisted that he had not committed any crime.


commit crime ( Not do, make, perform)

 turn to crime (=start committing crimes)

 crime rate (=the amount of crime that happens somewhere)

serious crime (Not  heavy)

petty crime (=crime that is not very serious)   

British English street crime

juvenile/youth crime (=by children and teenagers)

tough on crime (=always punishing crime severely)


We moved here because there was very little crime.

Women                commit far less crime than men.

Police officers are being given new powers to help combat crime.

the reasons why people               turn to crime.

a town with a relatively low crime rate.

The latest crime figures                show a drop in the number of robberies.

We need to focus more on crime prevention.

Violent crime is on the increase in the city.

There's been a rise in serious crime in the area.

He became involved in petty crime as a teenager.

a police crackdown on car crime.

Street crime was rising rapidly in Moscow.

a new support group for victims of crime.

Politicians are trying to appear tough on crime. 

Young men are more likely to commit crime.

She has committed a terrible crime.

3. a life of crime        

when someone spends their life stealing and committing other crimes, in order to get money to live.

4. the perfect crime  

a crime that no one knows has been committed, so no one can be punished for it.

5. crime of passion     

a crime, especially murder, caused by sexual  jealousy.

6. crime against humanity    

a crime of cruelty against large numbers of people, especially in a war.

7. crime doesn't pay 

used to say that crime does not give you any advantage, because you will be caught and punished - used when warning people not to get involved in crime.

8. it's a crime 

spoken said when you think something is very wrong, and someone should not do it:

It would be a crime to waste all that good food.

9. crime against        

Crimes against the elderly are becoming more common.

Police are still busy hunting for clues at the scene of the crime (=where the crime happened).


crimes that involve stealing things:         robbery, burglary, theft, shoplifting, fraud, carjacking

crimes that involve attacking people :    assault, mugging, murder, rape

someone who commits crimes: criminal, thief, crook, burglar, mugger, robber, pickpocket, rapist, offender, law-breaker-crime ➔             criminal, offence, felony, organized crime, war crime.



  1. Crime doesn’t pay: crime will ultimately not benefit a person.

No matter how tempting it may appear, crime doesn’t pay.


  1. Partners in crime: persons who cooperate in committing a crime.

The sales manager and the salesman are nothing but partners in crime.


  1. Poverty is not a crime: you shouldn’t condemn someone for being poor.

I wish there were a law to help all those people, Poverty is not a crime.




  • References:
    • Oxford word finder
    • Oxford collocations dictionary
    • McGraw idioms dictionary
    • Longman dictionary of common errors
    • Gerrys vocabulary teacher
    • Collin cobuild advanced learners dictionary
    • Cambridge phrasal verbs
    • Longman contemporary dictionary