15 Apr 2023
  • Website Development

Young Entrepreneurs and Crime: Unraveling the Dark Side

Start Reading
By Tyrone Showers
Co-Founder Taliferro


It was a typical evening when I decided to take a break from my daily tasks and delve into the world of YouTube. Little did I know that I was about to stumble upon an unsettling revelation that would change my perception of some of the brightest young minds in the business world. I clicked on a video that promised to unveil the dark secrets lurking beneath the glamorous façade of Fortune's 30 under 30. As the video played, I learned that many of these prodigies had turned to criminal activities, leveraging their brilliance for nefarious purposes. Shocked and intrigued, I couldn't help but wonder how these young stars had strayed so far from the path of success and into the realm of crime. This revelation led me to uncover the truth behind their descent into darkness, reshaping my understanding of success and the moral compass of those who achieve it.

Fortune's 30 under 30 lists are often seen as the epitome of success for young entrepreneurs and innovators, showcasing the brightest minds and rising stars in various industries. However, recent events have revealed a darker side to this prestigious list, with an alarming number of these celebrated individuals turning to criminal activities. This article will explore the reasons behind this phenomenon, discuss the implications for the business world and society, and suggest ways to mitigate the risks associated with young entrepreneurial success.

The Rise of Young Entrepreneurs

In recent years, the startup culture has experienced a boom driven by technological advances, global economy changes, and a shift in societal attitudes towards entrepreneurship. This has given rise to a new generation of young, ambitious individuals determined to make their mark on the world. Fortune's 30 under 30 list celebrates these trailblazers, featuring individuals who have made significant achievements in their respective fields and have the potential to shape the future.

The increased accessibility of resources, such as crowdfunding platforms and social media, has allowed young entrepreneurs to bypass traditional gatekeepers and forge their paths to success. While this democratization of opportunity has been largely positive, it has also created an environment in which some individuals may feel immense pressure to succeed at all costs. This pressure, combined with the relative inexperience and lack of mentorship many young entrepreneurs face, can create a breeding ground for unethical or criminal behavior.

The Allure of Crime

While most individuals on the 30 under 30 list continue to achieve great things, an alarming number have turned to criminal activities to maintain or further their success. The reasons behind this shift are complex and multifaceted, but some common factors include the pressure to succeed, the lure of easy money, and a sense of entitlement that can stem from early success. In some cases, these once-promising young entrepreneurs have been found guilty of fraud, embezzlement, or other white-collar crimes, while others have become involved in more violent criminal enterprises.

One possible explanation for this trend is the nature of modern entrepreneurship itself, which often rewards risk-taking and innovative thinking. While these qualities can be crucial to success in the business world, they can also lead some individuals down a slippery slope toward unethical or illegal activities. Furthermore, the high-stakes environment in which many startups operate can create a sense of urgency that may cause some entrepreneurs to prioritize short-term gains over long-term sustainability, thus increasing their likelihood of criminal behavior. Here is a sampling of Fortune 30 under 30 honorees who have turned to crime:

  • Sam Bankman Fried, Crypto Currency
  • Martin Shkreli, Pharma
  • Caroline Ellison and Sam Trabucco
  • Charlie Javice

Implications for the Business World and Society

The trend of Fortune 30 under 30 honorees turning to crime raises several questions and concerns for the business community and society. For one, it underscores the need for better support systems for young entrepreneurs, particularly regarding mental health and well-being. The intense pressure to succeed can drive some individuals to make poor decisions and engage in criminal behavior, so providing resources to help them cope with stress and setbacks is crucial.

Additionally, this trend highlights the importance of ethical education and corporate responsibility in the business world. Companies and investors should be more cautious when partnering with or funding young entrepreneurs, ensuring they uphold ethical standards and are accountable for their actions.


The stories of Fortune's 30 under 30 members turning to crime serve as a cautionary tale for aspiring entrepreneurs and the business world. As a society, we must continue to support young entrepreneurs, providing them with the necessary resources and guidance to succeed responsibly and sustainably. While success at a young age can be an incredible accomplishment, it is crucial to maintain a solid moral compass and prioritize ethical decision-making. By addressing the factors contributing to criminal behavior among these young achievers, we can foster a healthier entrepreneurial ecosystem and promote the values of integrity and accountability for future generations.

Tyrone Showers