One of the more serious white collar crimes in the New York Penal Code today is money laundering. Money laundering is essentially the process of turning money that is received from illegal activity into money that appears to be from a legal activity. Due to the severity of the crime, there are actually eight offenses in total that are in the penal code that are related to it.
One of the more serious money laundering charges in the New York Penal Code is money laundering in the fourth degree. You could be charged with money laundering in the fourth degree if you knowingly hide money to avoid it from being reported, transfer illegal money into legal money for sums in excess of $5,000, or simply use a financial transaction to try and hide another criminal act.
Due to the complexity of money laundering in the fourth degree, there are a lot of different potential examples. One example of money laundering would be if a thief were to steal $50,000. Instead of taking all of the money at one time and depositing it into one account, the theft will instead open a lot of different accounts and deposit the money over time at different banks. This process could reduce suspicion of each bank, would help to cover up the initial crime, and would then be considered money laundering in the fourth degree.
Defense of the Crime
Due to the complexity of money laundering in the fourth degree, most prosecutors will have a lot of historical records and evidence to support the claim. Since there can be severe punishments, it would be wise to hire a NYC criminal lawyer for defense. They could help develop a number of different defense strategies.
One of the most common ways to defend against money laundering in the fourth degree is if you were unaware that the money came from illegal activity. For example, if you run a business that was laundering money, you could technically be in trouble. However, the attorney may try to prove that you did not know that the money came from illegal sources, or that you were committing the crime. In some situations, this negligence of the crime could result in the charges being dropped or receiving a lesser charge.
Penalties for the Crime
Since money laundering in the fourth degree is a serious crime, there can be significant penalties that come with a conviction. This crime is a Class E felony, which allows a judge to sentence you up to 4 years in prison. Depending on the scope of the crime, and amount of times that it took place, you could also face severe financial penalties. In many cases, the charge of money laundering in the fourth degree is charged alongside another criminal activity, such as sale of drugs, which could come with even more significant penalties.
In conclusion, money laundering in the fourth degree is a crime in the New York Penal Code that comes with severe punishments. If you have been charged with money laundering in the fourth degree, it would be a good idea to hire a NYC criminal attorney to help defend you. The attorney will first work with the prosecutor and judge to try and have the charges dropped or reduced. If they are not able to do that, they may work to defend you in trial and ultimately prove that you were unaware that a crime was being committed.