One need not be accused of a violent crime to face serious consequences upon a conviction. Those who are found guilty of participating in a white collar crime could face prison time and steep fines. When one is charged with a federal crime rather than a state crime, the penalties are usually even more serious. But just what constitutes a white collar crime? As it turns out many activities fall under this category.
The first is money laundering. This is defined as filtering money that was obtained through illegal means through several transactions so that in the end the money appears to be from a legitimate source. Some of these schemes are more elaborate than others.
Tax evasion falls under this category as well. Under this scenario someone might be accused of failing to pay taxes that are owed. Among others, the evasion could take the form of transferring property or providing false information on a tax return.
Some people facing white collar charges are accused of taking money from an individual or entity that person owes a duty to. For example, an employee could be accused of stealing from his or her employer.
Various types of fraud are also considered white collar crimes. These include securities fraud, mortgage fraud and insurance fraud. The fraud can take multiple forms including lying on an application for insurance or securing investors in a project based on misleading or false information.
With white collar crimes it is possible that someone accused of the crime may not even be aware that he or she did anything wrong. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding an accusation of engaging in a white collar crime, for the best chance of securing a good outcome, it is a good idea to work with a criminal defense lawyer.