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A Guide to White-Collar Crimes in California

Posted by William Aron | Apr 13, 2022

A term reportedly coined in 1939, “white-collar crime” is now synonymous with fraud committed by corporate and government professionals. White-collar crimes typically involve cover-ups or violations of trust and do not require the use of threat, physical force, or violence.These crimes are usually financially motivated, and offenders often hope to either obtain assets or avoid losing them.

Investigations for white-collar crimes in California may continue for many years before charges are even filed, often completely unbeknownst to the suspect. If you suspect that you are under investigation for a white-collar crime in California, it is crucial that you seek legal counsel from an experienced attorney as soon as possible.

A conviction for a white-collar crime can devastate your reputation, freedom, and finances. Whether the amount involved is fifty dollars or thousands of dollars, contact a white-collar crimes defense lawyer right away so they may begin building the most robust case possible for your defense. At Aron Law Firm, we develop thoughtful, intelligent defense strategies for people accused of white-collar crimes in California.

Types of White-Collar Crimes in California

White-collar criminals in California may steal enormous sums of money without ever actually physically touching any cash.Various criminal activities are considered white-collar, including:

  • Public corruption
  • Money laundering
  • Corporate fraud
  • Securities and commodities fraud
  • Mortgage fraud
  • Financial institution fraud
  • Bank fraud
  • Embezzlement
  • Bribery
  • Fraud against the government
  • Election law violations
  • Mass marketing fraud
  • Forgery
  • Health care fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Counterfeiting
  • Welfare or SNAP fraud
  • Tax fraud

All of the offenses mentioned above are capable of leading to federal charges. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has teams of special agents who regularly work with other agencies to take down white-collar criminals. The FBI may work with:

  • California local law enforcement agencies
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission
  • The Internal Revenue Service
  • The U.S. Postal Inspection Service
  • The Commodity Futures Trading Commission
  • The Treasury Department's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

California Corporate Fraud Criminal Defense Attorney

Because corporate fraud has the potential to cause immense damage to the U.S. economy, it is one of the FBI's highest criminal priorities.The Bureau typically focuses its efforts on cases that involve accounting schemes designed to deceive investors, auditors, and analysts about the actual financial condition of a corporation or business.

Accounting scheme cases often involve manipulating financial data, share price, or other measurements of corporate valuation, artificially inflating the company's financial performance.Federal corporate fraud investigations mainly focus on:

  • Falsification of financial information
  • Fraudulent trades designed to inflate profits or mask losses
  • Self-dealing by corporate insiders
  • Insider trading
  • Kickbacks
  • Misuse of corporate property for personal gain
  • Late trading
  • Obstruction of justice designed to conceal criminal conduct

Penalties You Could Face for a White-Collar Crime Conviction in California

White-collar crimes (also known as criminal profiteering activities) are acts, attempts or threats made for financial gain or advantage. They are prohibited under the California Control of Profits of Organized Crime Act (California Penal Code Section 186).

Although “white-collar crime” denotes a non-violent act, local, state, and federal agencies are typically relentless in bringing suspects to justice. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the specific case, white-collar crimes can lead to misdemeanor or felony convictions.

White-collar misdemeanors are serious crimes punishable by time behind bars and hefty fines.Many employers will also fire or avoid hiring a person convicted of a white-collar crime because they see them as untrustworthy.

Felony white-collar crimes come with harsher penalties than misdemeanor offenses.Punishable by state prison time, substantial fines, and a loss of multiple civil rights, even after your sentence is complete.

Contact a California White-Collar Crimes Lawyer to Defend Your Case Today

There is a perception that white-collar criminals have a different prison experience than other convicted criminals. A common misconception is thatmost convicted white-collar felons are sent to minimum-security facilities. In reality, the jail or prison you are sent to is up to the correctional authorities. However, even in minimum-security facilities, there are still strict limitations and a loss of freedom.

Contrary to popular belief, people who end up behind bars for white-collar crimes do not fit into a specific mold. White-collar criminals range from everyday Californians to high-profile leaders of major corporations. If you or a family member is under investigation for or was arrested for a white-collar offense in California, it is imperative that you partner with an attorney experienced in white-collar criminal defense.

Whether you are facing federal or state criminal charges for a white-collar crime, Aron Law Firm may help defend your case. Call (805) 618-1768 or complete a contact form today for more information about your legal options.

About the Author

William Aron

Our firm is managed by William M. Aron. William M. Aron is a graduate from the Duke University School of Law and an active member of the California State Bar Association. While at Duke University, Mr. Aron also earned an M.A. in Psychology, authoring a paper examining the efficacy of polygraph e...

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