A conviction for a white collar crime can have serious consequences, including jail time and large fines. If you have been charged with a felony white collar crime, you must act to preserve your liberty. Call today to schedule a consultation with a white collar criminal defense lawyer.
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Frequently Asked Questions About White Collar Crime
Q: What is white collar crime?
A: White collar crime is a term used to describe criminal conduct involving illegal acts that use deceit and concealment to obtain money, property or services, or to secure a business or professional advantage. Another way to define white collar crime is as a "paper" crime or crime that is committed in the workplace in white collar industries as opposed to blue collar industries. White collar crimes are usually not violent, but their effects can be just as devastating.
Q: Who prosecutes white collar crimes?
A: White collar crimes may be either state or federal crimes. Because they often involve lengthy investigations that can cross state and international boundaries, the federal government is usually in a better position to investigate and prosecute white collar crimes. Usually a federal prosecutor, known as an Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA), will head up the prosecution.
White Collar Crime - An Overview
Crimes that do not involve physical violence, and that relate largely to financial matters, are often called white collar crimes. White collar crimes involve most of the same legal principles as do other crimes, and people charged with white collar crimes have the same rights and protections as defendants accused of other crimes. On the other hand, white collar offenses are often complex, and involve numerous complicated legal and factual issues. The possible penalties include fines, prison sentences, restitution and criminal forfeiture. If you have been charged with a white collar crime, contact Law Offices of Anthony B. Cantrell in San Antonio, TX, to schedule a consultation with an experienced white collar criminal defense attorney.
Black's Law Dictionary (8th ed. 2004) defines fraud as "a knowing misrepresentation of the truth or concealment of a material fact to induce another to act to his or her detriment." The injury in fraud is usually depriving a person of money or other property that rightfully belongs to that person. Fraud crimes are classified according to the type of transaction in which the deception occurred. Fraud is a serious and broadly defined criminal offense. Criminal fraud is a charge that can be brought against a business, as well as against an individual (a business cannot be put in prison, but it can be hit with substantial fines). A charge of fraud — let alone a conviction — can seriously damage the reputation of a person or company. Zealous legal representation is critical in fraud cases, as in all criminal cases, so it is critical for an accused to seek help from a white collar criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Grand Jury Investigations
A grand jury is a powerful tool that federal prosecutors can use to investigate and gather information about white collar crimes. The grand jury has the power to subpoena witnesses to testify and produce documents for review in an effort to gain information about an individual's involvement in a white collar crime and to see if there is enough evidence to indict that person.
Other Types of White Collar Crime
The term white collar crime encompasses a wide variety of criminal acts that are committed in a business or professional setting to achieve financial gain. This article provides general information about a few of the more common types of white collar crime: conspiracy, embezzlement, tax evasion and money laundering.
Penalties for White Collar Crime
The most frightening part of being a defendant in a white collar criminal case — or any criminal case — is the potential penalties if convicted. Most white collar defendants have no prior experience with the criminal justice system, and the uncertainty of their future looms understandably large in their minds. In addition to criminal penalties, many white collar offenses may give rise to civil lawsuits, brought either by the federal or state government, or by the victims of the offense. Any civil liability imposed as a result of these suits is in addition to, and not a substitute for, the penalties imposed in the criminal case.
White Collar Crime Resource Links
National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C)
The non-profit National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C) provides information on white collar crime issues and provides a newsletter, "The Informant."
Types and schemes of white collar crime
This page from the National Check Fraud Center defines dozens of individual types of white collar crime, from bank fraud to Ponzi schemes.
White collar crime: an overview
Contains general information about white collar crime, provided by the Legal Information Institute (LII).
White collar crime and fraud
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) website contains information about FBI programs, white collar crime, fraud and links to news and interesting cases.
Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN)
This network, organized under the federal Department of the Treasury, provides information about financial crimes, including links to laws, enforcement information and regulatory activity.