White collar crimes are illegal acts that deal with commercial or financial activity. They are non-violent offenses, and often, they evolve from seemingly innocent acts. A person accused of a white collar crime may have started by simply “borrowing” a few dollars that he or she intended to pay back. He or she might have thought that a “little white lie” on a financial documents or insurance paperwork could not really be that serious. However, depending on the value of the property or the amount of money involved in a white collar crime case, a person accused of such an offense could be looking at state or federal felony charges.
If you are accused of stealing from your company, misappropriating funds or property, lying on financial documents, concealing assets, withholding tax payments from the IRS, or other acts of white collar crime, it is imperative that you seek legal representation at once. It is important that you understand that an investigation into your activity likely began before you even realized you were under suspicion; investigators are probably at least one step ahead of you.
Finding a qualified defense attorney to represent you during questioning and court proceedings is critical to achieving a positive outcome to your case. With a proven record of successful white collar crime defense, Law Firm of Oklahoma is equipped to handle misdemeanor and felony white collar cases, and we offer representation in all district and federal courts in Oklahoma.
A great number of criminal activities fall under the umbrella of “white collar crime.” In general, white collar offenses are those that deal with business and finance. These are non-violent, financially-motivated offenses in which a person steals (embezzlement) or uses deception (fraud) to gain illegal profit. White collar crimes may be prosecuted as misdemeanors or felonies, a distinction which typically depends upon the monetary value of the theft or deception. A white collar offense may be as simple as passing a hot check or as complex as multimillion dollar investment fraud.
Most white collar offenses can be categorized as either embezzlement or fraud:
Of course, white collar offenses can take other forms as well—bribery, extortion, and computer crimes are other examples of white collar crime. The list of possible financial crimes seems endless and includes the following acts:
Occasionally, white collar crimes make national headlines—particularly when a celebrity is involved or when a Ponzi scheme bilks investors out of billions of dollars. Bernie Madoff is synonymous with financial fraud, and Willie Nelson and Martha Stewart are notorious for their tax evasion.
In general, however, white collar crimes are perpetrated on a much smaller scale. An employee with gambling debts tries to quickly settle by “borrowing” money from his or her employer, getting caught before having a chance to pay back any misappropriated funds. A person facing seemingly insurmountable debt conceals assets on a bankruptcy filing in an attempt to discharge the debt without losing everything.
Most people convicted of white collar crimes did not set out to harm anyone. In some cases, they see their acts as a way to “get rich quick,” but in others, they see a “simple” solution to a desperate financial situation.
Regardless of the circumstances that lead to a white collar criminal charge, every defendant is entitled to a fair trial. At Law Firm of Oklahoma, we work diligently to preserve the rights of those accused of white collar offenses, and we strive to bring a positive result to every case.
In general, the state of Oklahoma prosecutes cases of embezzlement and fraud that take place within its borders, but there are several conditions under which the federal government takes jurisdiction. Federal white collar crimes include wire fraud, mail fraud, or computer crimes that cross state borders; crimes committed on federal government property; white collar crimes related to Indian casinos and Indian gaming; and crimes against federal agencies or organizations using federal funding.
If you are involved in any business activity that you suspect may be illegal, stop now and call a lawyer. You may already be under investigation, and it helps to be prepared and to take a proactive approach if charges are pending.
If you have already been questioned, arrested, or charged, it is not too late to get help.
Call (405) 608-4990 to schedule a risk-free consultation with an experienced and well-qualified defense lawyer.