Understanding the Definition of White Collar Crime

White collar crime refers to deceptive acts that are designed to produce some type of financial gain. White collar offenses are financial crimes and do not involve any violent or drug-related criminal behavior; in fact, many perpetrators of white collar crimes are typically involved in legal businesses and may even be well-respected members of the business community.

Examples of white collar crime include securities fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, insider trading, tax fraud, money laundering, bank fraud, embezzlement, health care fraud, insurance fraud, mortgage fraud, elder financial fraud, identity theft and more.

White collar crimes are prosecuted by federal authorities — the FBI, IRS, SEC, U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Customs, etc. — with substantial resources at their disposal to pursue suspects. As a result, the federal conviction rates for white collar crimes are high and sentences tend to be fairly lengthy when compared with those for nonfinancial crimes. In addition, most states empower state agencies to investigate and enforce white collar statutes at the state level.

Individuals or companies suspected of committing a white collar crime usually become aware they are the targets of a federal or state investigation well before any arrest is made. This provides subjects of white collar investigations with the opportunity to help mitigate any potential criminal charges by hiring an experienced white collar defense attorney early on in the investigative process.

A skilled white collar defense attorney can help ensure that individuals under investigation do not unknowingly waive any of their legal rights. He or she may also be able to engage prosecutors early in the process to hopefully resolve the case or lessen the charges through negotiation.

Whether you are facing a serious federal white-collar prosecution, a state murder charge, or misdemeanor charges, The Cogdell Law Firm has the experience, knowledge and reputation you want for your legal team. When results matter most, contact Dan Cogdell at (713) 426-2244 or dan@cogdell-law.com.