Hablamos Español

What Are White-Collar Crimes in California?

When most people hear the word “crime,” they don’t picture a man or woman in a business suit. However, white-collar crimes are more common than you may think. If you’ve been charged with a white-collar crime, you must read on and reach out to our Tehama County white-collar crimes lawyer to learn more about how we can help. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What are some examples of white-collar crimes?

There are many different types of white-collar crimes, though they all usually involve some sort of theft, and oftentimes, the theft involves an individual who is entrusted with certain private financial information or has access to a company’s finances. For this reason, in many cases, these crimes frequently occur in business and government environments. Some of the most common white-collar crimes are as follows:

  • Ponzi schemes: Ponzi schemes were brought back into the spotlight after Bernie Madoff ran the largest Ponzi scheme in history. Essentially, in these schemes, an individual will convince people to invest in a nonexistent enterprise with the belief that they will receive a quick return on their investment, only to find that their money has been stolen in the long run.
  • Extortion: This is when someone threatens or blackmails an individual into giving them one or more monetary payments.
  • Embezzlement: Embezzlement is when someone misappropriates assets that are entrusted to them. This often happens in companies where one individual has access to private financial information.
  • Corporate fraud: This is when a company or business falsifies information to save or make money.
  • Bankruptcy fraud: When someone files for bankruptcy (either a business or an individual), they are required to supply various documents and other information regarding their financial situation. When they withhold documents or otherwise try to lie about certain aspects of their finances, they may face charges of bankruptcy fraud.

What are the penalties for a white-collar crime?

In most cases, white-collar crimes are heard in Federal Court. Therefore, if you are charged with such a crime, you will most likely face federal sentencing guidelines. Depending on your circumstances (the nature/extent of your crime, whether you have a criminal history, etc.), you will be charged with at least one of the 43 existing offense levels, 6 criminal history categories, and 4 sentencing zones. Upon conviction, you may face years of incarceration, high fines, restitution, home detention, and more.

If you have any further questions about white-collar crimes or you need a legal team who can defend you at every turn, look no further than Cohen Criminal Law. We are here to fight for you and your rights, every step of the way.