The prevalence of antisocial personality disorder and its relationship to criminal offenses in pathological gamblers was investigated. A semi-structured interview schedule containing DSM-III criteria for antisocial personality and the California Psychological Inventory Socialisation subscale was administered to a sample of 306 pathological gamblers. Of the total sample, 35% reported no offense. Forty eight percent admitted to the commission of a gambling related offense, 6% to a non-gambling related offense, and 11% to both types of offense. Fifteen percent of subjects met DSM-III diagnostic criteria for antisocial personality disorder. Though these subjects were at greatest risk for committing criminal offenses, offenses were committed independently of DSM-III antisocial personality disorder in the majority of gamblers. It was concluded that features of antisocial personality emerged in response to repeated attempts to conceal excessive gambling and gambling induced financial difficulties.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
American Psychiatric Association, (1980).Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, (third edition). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association.
American Psychiatric Association, (1987).Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, (third edition-revised). Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Association.
Bartol, C.R. & Bartol, A.M. (1986).Criminal Behaviour: A psychosocial approach. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall.
Becona, E. (1992). The prevalence of pathological gambling in Galicia (Spain).The Society for the Study of Gambling (Newsletter), 20, 10–18.
Blackburn, R. (1973). An empirical classification of psychopathic personality.British Journal of Psychiatry, 127, 456–460.
Blaszczynski, A.P. (1988).Clinical studies in pathological gambling: Is controlled gambling an acceptable treatment outcome? Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, University of New South Wales.
Blaszczynski, A.P. & McConaghy, N. (1987). Demographic and clinical data on compulsive gambling. In M. Walker (Ed.).Faces of Gambling (pp. 263–272). Sydney: National Association of Gambling Studies.
Blaszczynski, A.P. & McConaghy, N. (1994). Criminal offenses in Gamblers Anonymous and hospital treated pathological gamblers.Journal of Gambling Studies, 10, 99–127.
Brown, R.I.F. (1987). Pathological gambling and associated patterns of crime: Comparison with alcohol and other drug addictions.Journal of Gambling Behaviour, 3, 98–114.
Cleckley, H. (1976)The mask of sanity. St. Louis: Mosby.
Frank, M.L., Lester, D., & Wexler, A. (1991). Suicidal behaviour among members of Gamblers Anonymous.Journal of Gambling Studies, 7, 249–254.
Glen, A.M. (1979).Personality research on pathological gamblers. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, New York: American Psychological Association.
Gough, H.G. (1969).California Psychological Inventory. Manual. California: Consulting Psychologists Press.
Gough, H.G. (1987).California Psychological Inventory. Administrators guide. California: Consulting Psychologists Press.
Hare, R.D. & Cox, D.N. (1978). Clinical, and empirical conceptions of psychopathy, and the selection of subjects for research. In R.D. Hare & D. Schalling (Eds.).Psychopathic behaviour: Approaches to research: (pp. 1–21). New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Lesieur, H.R. (1979). The compulsive gambler's spiral of options and involvement.Psychiatry, 42, 79–87.
Lesieur, H.R. (1984).The chase. Cambridge, MA: Schenkman Books.
Lesieur, H.R. (1987). Gambling, pathological gambling and crime. In T. Galski (ed.)Handbook on pathological gambling, (pp. 89–104). Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas Pub.
Lowenfeld, B.H. (1979).Personality dimensions of a pathological gambler. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, Ohio: Kent State University.
McCormick, R.A., Taber, J.I., Kruedelbach, N., & Russo, A.M. (1987). Personality profiles hospitalised pathological gamblers: The California Psychological Inventory.Journal of Clinical Psychology, 43, 521–527.
Meyer, G.M. & Fabian, T. (1990).Pathological gambling. Paper presented at the Eighth International Conference on Risk and Gambling, London.
Moravec, J. & Munley, P. (1982). Psychological test findings on pathological gamblers in treatment.Proceedings of the Fifth National Conference on Gambling and Risk Taking. University of Nevada: Bureau of Business and Economic Research.
Peterson, V.W. (1947). Why honest people steal.The Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 38, 94–103.
Politzer, R.M., Morrow, J.S. & Leavey, S.B. (1981). Report on the societal cost of pathological gambling and the cost/benefit and effectiveness of treatment. In W.R. Eadington (Ed.).Fifth National Conference on Gambling and Risk Taking. University of Nevada: Bureau of Business and Economic Research.
The Quality Assurance Project, (1991). Treatment outlines for antisocial personality disorder.Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 25, 541–547.
Robins, L., Tipp, J. & Przybeck, T. Antisocial personality. In L. Robins & D. Regier (Eds.)Psychiatric disorders in America, in press. Cited in The Quality Assurance Project, (1991). Treatment outlines for antisocial personality disorder.Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry,25, 541–547.
Roston, R.A. (1961).Some personality characteristics of compulsive gamblers. Los Angeles: University of California.
This study was supported by a grant from the Criminology Research Council. The views expressed are the responsibility of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Council. The contribution of Anna Frankova, Research Assistant, is gratefully acknowledged.
About this article
Cite this article
Blaszczynski, A.P., McConaghy, N. Antisocial personality disorder and pathological gambling. J Gambling Stud 10, 129–145 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02109936
- Great Risk
- Total Sample
- Personality Disorder
- Pathological Gambler
- Financial Difficulty