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Brooklyn White Collar Crime Lawyers

White Collar Crimes: Understanding the Complexities

A white-collar crime includes a number of different types of crimes. Some are more complex than others. These crimes are called white-collar crimes for the simple reason that they are generally committed by people who typically wear collars or who are otherwise professional and working in a professional capacity. That is, as opposed to street crime, white collar crime is usually committed within established businesses and companies.

Generally speaking, white collar crimes are financially motivated. They also generally involve deceit of some kind. For example, embezzlement, fraud, Money Laundering, extortion, and Tax Evasion are all types of white-collar crime. Scams or other deceitful, fraudulent actions are usually involved in some way. The victims of white-collar crime may have been lied to or told a dishonest fact that led them to losing money.

Types of White Collar Crime

1. Fraud

The first and one of the most common types of white-collar crime is fraud. Fraud centers around crimes that involve monetary gain that comes from the deceit of an individual or party. There are several types of fraud. For example, securities fraud would involve crimes such as insider trading.

Another type of fraud includes healthcare fraud. For example, if you were to receive a health bill that included added expenses or procedures that you never had, this could lead to a charge of fraud. Other types of fraud include business-related scams, or other insurance frauds.

2. Embezzlement

Embezzlement is another common type of white-collar crime. In an embezzlement situation, someone is improperly stealing funds from someone who that person owes a job or duty to. For example, an employee who acts as an accountant or money manager for a larger institution may decide to siphon money into their own personal account from the funds of the company, and this would be an example of embezzlement. Even if the individual has the intent of paying back the funds as soon as they can, it is still an embezzlement crime.

3. Money Laundering

Money-laundering is another type of white-collar crime. Some individuals or parties who may deal in criminal acts will attempt to filter the illegal funds that they obtained through their criminal acts into the legal monetary system. There are three main steps to Money Laundering. First, the party puts money into a bank or another financial organization. The funds are then filtrated through several complex transactions. This makes it more difficult to find the dirty money. The final step includes integrating the newly cleaned money into the legal monetary system so that purchases can be made in a technically legal way.

4. Tax Evasion

Tax evasion is yet another type of white-collar crime. There are several types of Tax Evasion, but what they all have in common is that the individual or business filing the taxes is trying to avoid paying them in an illegal way. Attempting to pay the least amount of taxes possible is not a crime, but it is illegal to lie about your income on your tax forms so as to pay less.

An Attorney Can Help You

There are numerous other types of white-collar crimes. It can be difficult to face these charges, but depending on the charges, there are numerous ways that an attorney can help you.

What’s important is to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. That’s because as soon as the prosecution brings a case against you and indicts you, it is the ethical duty of the prosecution to try you for the harshest possible punishment. But if you can hire a reputable attorney to negotiate on your behalf before an indictment, you have a much greater chance of success in your case. Talk to an attorney today to explain your situation and hear your options.

Understanding Conspiracy

In criminal law, a conspiracy is when at least two people plan to commit one or more unlawful actions, and then at least one member of the conspiracy takes an action as part of that plan.

A conspiracy charge needs four essential elements. The conspiracy must involve at least two people, as one person cannot form a conspiracy. There must be an agreement between the conspirators, although this doesn’t need to be a written agreement. The conspirators must either plan to accomplish an illegal goal, or accomplish a legal goal through illegal means. One or more conspirators must take some action to accomplish the goal of the conspiracy.

A conspiracy can apply to a wide range of criminal charges. A group of people could form a conspiracy to commit murder, armed robbery or traffic drugs, to name a few common types of conspiracies.

One thing that’s important to realize about conspiracies is that the defendants can be guilty of conspiracy even if they haven’t done anything illegal, although this can make it more difficult for the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that there was a conspiracy in place.

Let’s say that three people form a conspiracy to rob an armored car. If one member of the group purchases a handgun to use in the crime, or follows the armored car to analyze its route, every member of the group could already be charged and convicted with conspiracy to commit armed robbery. They would be able to defend themselves by stating that there was no conspiracy, and without proof of one, the prosecution would have no case. After all, purchasing a handgun or driving in the same direction as an armored car aren’t illegal. However, if the prosecution had a recording of the three people discussing their plans for the crime, then it’s likely that the judge or jury would convict the group of conspiracy.

Conspiracy is separate from the actual crime itself. In the example above, if the group actual went through with the armed robbery and were apprehended, they would be charged with both armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery. This often results in a more severe punishment, and a conviction for a conspiracy to commit a felony may have a mandatory minimum sentence.

There is a difference between simply having knowledge of a crime and being a co-conspirator. If the group of conspirators above told a friend about their armed robbery plans, that doesn’t make the friend part of the conspiracy, unless this friend also helped out in some way, such as driving the getaway car for them. It’s the responsibility of the prosecution to prove that there was some sort of agreement between every conspirator beyond a reasonable doubt.

One way that a conspiracy charge can benefit the prosecution is by relieving them of the need to prove the roles each member of the group had in a crime. For example, in a murder case, the prosecution can charge every member of a conspiracy with conspiracy to commit murder, even without determining who did what. This is important, because otherwise every conspirator could handle the murder weapon and then use as a defense that there’s no proof which one of them actually committed the murder. A conspiracy to commit murder charge eliminates this defense option, as they would still all be considered guilty.

There is one notable exception to the rule that a conspirator must take an action towards accomplishing the conspiracy’s goal, and that’s with drug conspiracy charges. For a drug conspiracy charge, there are only two necessary elements: an agreement between at least two people to violate one or more drug laws, and proof that the conspirators knew of and joined this agreement. This obviously gives the prosecution much more latitude, as this conspiracy charge will apply to more situations.

If you’re charged with conspiracy, it’s important to hire a skilled attorney to build a strong defense. While conspiracy charges are broad, they can also be very difficult for the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, so a qualified defense attorney can find weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and exploit them

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