An Overview of White Collar Crime
The term “white collar crime” was created in the 1930’s and was used to refer to financially motivated crimes that were non-violent in nature. Because these types of offenses are considered to have such a large potential economic impact, a number of federal agencies are responsible for investigating and prosecuting them.
Although some of the most well-known white collar crimes are perhaps embezzlement, money laundering, and healthcare fraud, there are actually a number of different offenses that fall under this category, all of which come with severe penalties, so if you have been charged with a white collar crime, it is critical to speak with an experienced attorney who can help you formulate a defense.
Types of White Collar Crimes
While there are a variety of offenses that fall under the broad category of white collar crime, the most commonly charged include the following:
- Credit card fraud;
- Mortgage fraud;
- Identity theft;
- Insider trading and securities fraud;
- Bankruptcy fraud;
- Theft of public property or records;
- Insurance fraud;
- Bank fraud;
- Trafficking in counterfeit goods;
- Wire fraud;
- Mail fraud;
- Public corruption; and
- Conspiracy to commit fraud against the U.S.
According to the FBI, white collar crimes are illegal acts that are characterized by concealment, deceit, and violations of trust, although they are not necessarily dependent upon the application of threats or violence. Even though this class of crimes doesn’t involve physical force or violence, the penalties are often just as severe for white collar crime defendants as they are for those who are convicted of violent offenses. In fact, in addition to potential prison time, defendants also face hefty fines, and permanent damage to their professional and personal reputations. This is particularly true in cases that fall under federal jurisdiction, which can have important repercussions for defendants, as federal offenses tend to be aggressively prosecuted and come with serious penalties. These penalties can be enhanced even further if a person is accused of committing two or more crimes with the same intent, result, method, or accomplices, as this is considered an aggravated white collar crime, which could be punishable up to 30 years in prison.
Building a Strong Defense
Fortunately, there are a number of defenses available to those who have been accused of committing a white collar crime, including:
- Mistaken identity;
- Lack of intent;
- Illegal search and seizure; and
- Insufficient evidence.
Effective presentation of these arguments usually requires the aid of a forensic accountant, as well as industry specialists, so it is important to work with an attorney who has the experience and resources necessary to obtain the services of expert witnesses and specialists.
Call Our Legal Team Today
If you are currently being investigated for a white collar crime, you need the advice and guidance of a dedicated attorney. To speak with experienced Miami white collar crime lawyer Jeffrey S. Weiner, P.A. about your own case, please call 305-670-9919 today. Initial consultations are conducted free of charge, so please don’t hesitate to call our legal team.