Providing You With Expert Legal Representation For White Collar Charges
The term white collar crime is a misnomer in the sense that the wardrobe has nothing to do with the criminal act, but these offenses are serious regardless of ambiguous terminology. They encompass a wide array of financial misconduct, often in the context of government or corporate culture. There is no crime listed in US or Texas criminal laws, but the FBI has developed a working definition of white collar crimes. This class of offenses is characterized by misrepresentations, concealment, or a violation of trust to advance the actor’s financial interests. White collar crimes typically do not involve violence or threats, but they often lead to extreme losses for victims.
Officials diligently investigate and pursue those suspected of white collar crime activity, so it is wise to retain a skilled attorney for assistance. The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates is committed to defending individuals accused of these offenses, and we are experienced in developing strategies for fighting the charges. Please contact our firm to schedule a consultation with a League City white collar crimes lawyer who can explain how the laws work. Some background information is also useful.
Our Legal Services for White Collar Crime Defense
There may be no statutory definition of white collar crimes, but both US and Texas laws cover the misconduct associated with them. Most offenses are established through statutes on theft, fraud, and bribery. We will be at your side to defend charges for:
- Bank and mortgage fraud, including making false statements to financial institutions;
- Identity theft and credit card fraud;
- False statements in connection with Social Security disability benefits;
- Insurance fraud;
- Tax fraud and tax evasion, usually with filing reports and information to avoid paying taxes;
- Health care fraud, including schemes involving Medicare and Medicaid;
- Counterfeiting and presenting false currency;
- Embezzlement, in which a person has legal possession of something but then converts it to his or her own use;
- Crimes involving computers and the internet;
- Preparing false financial and accounting records;
- Fraud involving stock offerings, securities, and commodities;
- Forging signatures and documents;
- Money laundering to clear funds obtained through unlawful schemes;
- Perjury; and,
- Pyramid or Ponzi schemes, in which higher up investors attract new capital from additional investors and divide it among themselves.
Facts About White Collar Crimes
Each offense in this category includes specific characteristics and elements that the prosecution must prove. However, there are some general points to keep in mind.
- The majority of white collar crimes are felonies, and the lowest in Texas is a State Jail Felony punishable by 180 days to 2 years’ incarceration. Large scale schemes are more severe, potentially leading to 20 or more years in prison.
- Even when a white collar crime is charged as a misdemeanor, the laws treat each instance or event within the scheme as a single count. The charges and jail time add up.
- Besides punishment for a conviction, a sentence for a white collar crime will typically include the requirement to pay restitution. You could be required to pay victims back, with interest, and your sentence is not complete until full reimbursement.
- There are collateral consequences for any conviction in Texas, which are the legal impacts that affect your life after serving your sentence. For one, a conviction appears on your criminal record, so you could have issues finding employment.
Strategies for Fighting the Charges
This information on the penalties for a white collar crimes conviction makes you realize the importance of defenses and other options for resolving the charges. Initially, bear in mind that the prosecutor must prove each essential fact beyond a reasonable doubt to obtain a conviction. Your first strategy is to expose weaknesses in the evidence and prevent the government from meeting this burden. Additional options may include:
- A violation of your civil rights, including unlawful search and seizure;
- Entrapment by officials, which leads someone to misconduct they would not normally engage in without prompting;
- Lack of intent; and,
Though not a defense, plea bargaining may also be a wise strategy. You will have to plead guilty, but the charges and your sentence may both be reduced.
Legal Help with Defenses
It is a relief to know that there are strategies for white collar crimes cases, but you put your rights at risk unless you have assistance from legal counsel. The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates will support you throughout the criminal process, so you can count on a League City white collar crimes defense attorney for help from start to finish:
- Pre-arrest and Investigations: Many white collar crimes are preceded by months-long probes, but you still have rights before being arrested. By retaining counsel as soon as you know you are being investigated, you can protect important evidence.
- Arraignment: During your first court appearance after an arrest, the judge will read the official charges and ask you to enter a plea. The arraignment is also where you can request to be free on bond for pretrial release.
- Pretrial Proceedings and Motions: Most defenses must be raised by motion, so your lawyer will handle filings, briefs, and arguments. There may also be court hearings related to evidence, which can be particularly complicated in a white collar crimes case with technical, forensic details.
- Trial: The prosecution presents its case first, and your attorney will have the chance to cross-examine witnesses. Once the government rests, it will be your turn to present testimony, evidence, and arguments in your defense.
Call Now to Speak with a League City White Collar Crimes Lawyer
Every stage of the criminal proceeding may offer opportunities for defenses, and the pre-arrest and investigations phases are especially important in white collar crimes cases. As such, it is critical to retain legal representation as early on in the process as possible. The Law Offices of Tad Nelson & Associates is prepared to pursue all strategies for obtaining a favorable outcome, so please contact our firm right away. You can call (281) 962-7817 or visit our website to set up a consultation with a Texas criminal defense attorney.
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