How has Al Capone influenced crime and punishment in America?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Al Capone helped to create the modern system of organized crime and of federal law enforcement in the United States.  During Prohibition, Capone built up a huge and lucrative network of criminal activity centered around bootlegging.  This more organized system of "mafia" activity persists to this day.  At the same time, Capone's actions helped to bring about the rise in importance of federal agents.  Capone's criminal activity captured the imagination of the country and so did the efforts of the federal agents who eventually were able to get him imprisoned.  This led to a sort of celebrity status for both major crime figures and for the agencies that pursue them.  This system continues to be in place to some extent to this day.