Common White Collar Crimes in The Eastern District of Texas
White collar crimes involve the use of deception to obtain an unlawful financial gain. Sometimes referred to as corporate or financial crimes, white collar crimes are non-violent and financially motivated.
Common white collar crimes include:
- Fraud, such as tax fraud, mail fraud, corporate fraud, and bank fraud
- Tax evasion
- Insider trading (when someone with inside knowledge of a company uses that knowledge to buy and sell stocks)
- Embezzlement (when someone entrusted with another person's property takes it)
- Money laundering (disguising or concealing unlawful sources of money)
These crimes are referred to as “white collar” because they are often committed by professionals who have access to large amounts of money in the course of their work. They are serious offenses, mostly prosecuted at a federal level. Call Lawhorn and Malouf, PLLC at 903-999-1234 to schedule a Free Consultation with an attorney.
Texas White Collar Crime Penalties
Possible penalties for a conviction of a white collar crime include:
Some people view white collar crimes as “victimless” and therefore less serious than violent or drug crimes. However white collar crimes often involve a breach of trust by someone in a position of responsibility. For this reason, the penalties for white collar crimes are harsh and a conviction can often result in a lengthy prison sentence.
There can also be financial penalties imposed on a defendant convicted of a white collar crime such as:
- Paying the costs of the prosecution
- Paying restitution to the victims
- Forfeiture of their assets
Beyond the penalties imposed by a court, a conviction for a white collar crime can have long-term social consequences, particularly in terms of finding work. An offender may lose their professional license or be barred from working by the relevant professional association.
Common Defenses to White Collar Crimes in Texas
The defenses available to a defendant will depend on the specific circumstances of their case. However, there are some common defenses to white collar crimes.
Lack of Intent
To prove most white collar crimes, the prosecution needs to establish that the defendant intended to commit the crime. If the defendant had no intention of engaging in unlawful activity, they may be able to defend the charge.
When investigating white collar crimes, law enforcement may set up an operation to try and catch suspected individuals. Although this investigative technique is allowed, law enforcement cannot coerce an individual to commit a crime. If they do, and the defendant would otherwise not have committed the act, the defendant may be able to argue the defense of entrapment.
If a defendant was forced to commit a white collar crime because of threats, they may be able to defend themselves based on duress. Also referred to as coercion, duress requires the defendant to show they committed the act only because of an immediate and inescapable threat of bodily harm or death.
Where a defendant lacks the mental capacity to understand the criminal nature of their actions, they may be able to argue incapacity. However, this can be difficult to prove in white collar cases involving sophisticated conduct by a defendant over a long period.
White Collar Crimes Defense in The Eastern District of Texas
Although white collar crimes are not considered to be violent, they are serious and could have long-term reprecussions. If you have been accused of a white collar crime, you don't have to face it alone. At Lawhorn and Malouf, PLLC, our team will discuss your case with you and examine all potential defenses. You should call 903-999-1234 today or fill out an online submission form today to schedule a Free Consultation about your case.