What Are White-Collar Crimes?
White-collar crimes include a host of offenses—all motivated by financial gain and often committed by those with high social status.
A white-collar crime may be a state or federal offense, depending on where it was committed. In some cases, you may even face cases in both venues – New Jersey State Courts and federal court.
If the federal government pursues charges against you, they will work alongside law enforcement with other government agencies to investigate your crimes. The Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) often works with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Department of Justice (DOJ), and other government agencies.
Types of White-Collar Crimes in New Jersey
Examples of different white-collar crimes include:
- Securities fraud
- Ponzi schemes
- Tax evasion
- Credit card fraud
- Insurance fraud
- Money laundering
- Federal Trade Commission’s Antitrust violations
- Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations
- OSHA’S Whistleblower law retaliation violations
When Do White-Collar Crimes Become Federal Offenses?
A crime becomes a federal offense when it involves a federal government agency, occurs on federal property, or crosses state lines. Most white-collar crimes are federal offenses. When a white-collar crime is a federal offense, the federal government decides whether to prosecute it or leave the issue to the state.
When a crime is a federal offense, the penalties increase. You may serve a longer prison sentence or pay higher fines. Further, federal prisons are notoriously worse for inmates than many state jails and prison systems.
What Are the Penalties for White-Collar Crimes?
People who commit white-collar crimes often avoid prison but pay hefty fines. However, this is not always true. Many white-collar crimes have penalties that include the potential for incarceration.
Incarceration in a Federal Prison
Since white-collar crimes are generally felonies, they can result in years in federal prison. Many of these crimes result in up to 20 years in prison. Incarceration would likely take place in a low-security facility.
Many people convicted of white-collar crimes receive a sentence that includes house arrest instead of prison. You may be required to wear an ankle monitor or other GPS device to ensure you stay at your home or within a specific range.
Probation allows you to move within your community or state, but you will still have restrictions. You must meet with a probation officer regularly, and you may have to attend classes, take drug or alcohol tests, or comply with other requirements.
White-collar crime convictions often come with hefty fines, up to thousands of dollars or even more. A fine is generally imposed on top of other penalties.
White-collar crimes against organizations may be seen as victimless, but they rarely are. In some cases, the victims may be investors or account holders. If convicted, you may face millions in restitution towards people who were defrauded.
Your Defense Options for White-Collar Crimes
You must build a strong defense against white-collar crime allegations. Defenses your white-collar crime attorney might use include the following:
- Police misconduct
- Illegal search and seizure
- Improper interviews
- Invalid warrant
- Failure to read Miranda warnings
- Failure to provide legal assistance when requested
- Mistaken identity
- Lack of intent
Some of these defenses could result in significant evidence being thrown out. Others may result in a complete dismissal of charges.
Contact a White-Collar Criminal Defense Attorney Right Away
If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime, you should contact a white-collar crime attorney who can help protect your rights and reputation. Clark, Clark & Noonan, LLC understands that even the allegation of these types of crimes could result in personal and financial ruin. We will do everything we can to help you navigate these issues.
Call us today at 732-303-7857 or use our online contact form to schedule a consultation.