Bel Air White Collar Crime Lawyer
White collar crime was a term coined in 1939 for crimes that are nonviolent, and instead involve deceit, violation of trust, and concealment for financial gain. Even though there is no force or physical danger involved in white collar crimes still devastate people’s lives so the punishments for white collar crimes can be quite serious. If you or a family member has been charged with committing a white collar crime then you should seek immediate legal counsel. Schlaich & Thompson Chartered in Bel Air and Columbia can advise you from the beginning, explain the charges to you, and begin building a defense for your case.
Fraud is when a person deceives a victim to gain money, property, or another item of value. The victim could be an individual, a business, or even the government. There are many types of fraud, including:
- Securities and commodities fraud;
- Tax fraud;
- Retirement plan fraud;
- Mass marketing fraud;
- Healthcare fraud;
- Mortgage fraud; and
- Elder fraud.
When a person misappropriates money or property entrusted to them it is a type of fraud called embezzlement. Often this happens in a workplace where an employee who has access to funds either skims off the top by consistently taking a small amount of money for themselves or takes a large sum of money before leaving their position permanently.
Embezzlement is not just white collar crime committed by top executives of a large company. According to Entrepreneur, 80% of embezzlement cases happen at small businesses with less than 150 employees. Even a cashier who knowingly takes five dollars from her register nightly is committing embezzlement.
There are numerous ways to commit identity theft beyond stealing a person’s name, Social Security number, and birthdate. Stealing another person’s identity can also be done with medicare numbers, addresses, internet passwords, passports, and more.
Between 2010 and 2015 the number of identity theft complaints to the FBI nearly doubled, and in response they have been working hard to heavily sentence people who commit this white collar crime. For instance, in 2014 the Identity Theft Penalty Enhancement Act established aggravated identity theft. With aggravated identity theft the person is sentenced to an additional two years if they use the stolen identity to commit a felony crime and an additional five years if the identity is used to commit a terrorist act.
Racketeering is when a group runs illegal business activities. The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) is a federal law that was passed in 1970 to combat such criminal activity. Examples of racketeering include:
- Money laundering;
- Counterfeiting; and
- Illegal gambling.
Contact Schlaich & Thompson Chartered in Bel Air
If you have been charged with a white collar crime it is crucial that you understand your charges and find skilled legal representation immediately. The government has created numerous agencies and laws to help prevent these crimes and the court will likely push for a harsh punishment. At Schlaich & Thompson Chartered in Bel Air, we will work hard on your behalf, presenting a solid case for either settlement or for trial. Contact us today for a free initial consultation at 410-838-0004.