an action or an instance of negligence that is deemed injurious to the public welfare or morals or to the interests of the state and that is legally prohibited.
criminal activity and those engaged in it: to fight crime.
the habitual or frequent commission of crimes: a life of crime.
any offense, serious wrongdoing, or sin.
a foolish, senseless, or shameful act: It's a crime to let that beautiful garden go to ruin.

1200–50; Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French < Latin crīmin- (stem of crīmen) charge, crime

crimeless, adjective
crimelessness, noun
anticrime, adjective
supercrime, noun

1. wrong; misdemeanor, tort, felony. 1, 4. Crime, offense, sin agree in meaning a breaking of law. Crime usually means any serious violation of human laws: the crime of treason or robbery. Offense is used of an infraction of either human or divine law, and does not necessarily mean a serious one: an offense leading to a jail sentence; an offense against morals. Sin means a breaking of moral or divine law: the sins of greed and lust. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
crime (kraɪm)
1.  an act or omission prohibited and punished by law
2.  a.  unlawful acts in general: a wave of crime
 b.  (as modifier): crime wave
3.  an evil act
4.  informal something to be regretted: it is a crime that he died young
[C14: from Old French, from Latin crīmen verdict, accusation, crime]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

mid-13c., from O.Fr. crimne, from L. crimen (gen. criminis) "charge, indictment, offense," from cernere "to decide, to sift" (see crisis). But Klein rejects this and suggests *cri-men, which would originally have been "cry of distress." The L. word is glossed in O.E. by facen,
also "deceit, fraud, treachery." Crime wave first attested 1920 (in headline in the "Times" of London).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


three classifications of criminal offense that are central to the administration of justice in many Roman- and civil-law countries (for distinctions in Anglo-American law covering analogous offenses, see felony and misdemeanour). Crimes in French law are the most serious offenses, punishable by death or prolonged imprisonment. A delit is any offense punishable by a short prison sentence, usually from one to five years, or a fine. Contraventions are minor offenses.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Finally, no genetic syndrome can account for major fluctuations in crime rates
  across time and distance.
The police are supposed to reduce fear of crime as well as crime.
Confessing to a crime usually is not enough to throw you behind bars.
It started out as a program to collect and represent data on crime scenes.
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