White-collar crimes involve financially motivated offenses, typically committed by professionals or businesses. These crimes are non-violent and usually entail a certain level of fraud or abuse of power. Defending against charges of white-collar crimes necessitates a skilled California white-collar crimes lawyer who may investigate the matter, formulate a strong defense, and defend you in court.
At the Aron Law Firm, we are dedicated to going up against even the most powerful state and federal prosecutors to protect our clients' rights and freedoms. If you have been accused of or are currently under investigation for a white-collar crime, do not delay in contacting a seasoned Santa Barbara criminal defense lawyer today.
What Are Common White-Collar Crimes in California?
White-collar crimes are financial crimes that impact a person, company, government, or the stock market. In most instances, the individual being charged with a white-collar crime holds great authority or trust—for example, as a business partner, politician, banker, broker, or other professional.
Common white-collar crimes in Santa Barbara include:
- Bribery: This is the payment or acceptance of money or valuable goods in exchange for an official act.
- Fraud: This term defines an act of dishonesty that is committed for economic or other gains. There are various types of fraud, like tax fraud, insurance fraud, bank fraud, mortgage fraud, wire or mail fraud, healthcare fraud, and securities and exchange fraud, to name a few.
- Embezzlement: This type of financial fraud involves an individual or group of people misusing financial resources and assets that have been assigned to their care.
- Money laundering: This is the criminal procedure of concealing the source of illegally acquired money by moving it through an intricate series of banking or commercial transactions.
- Forgery: This is the act of creating or modifying false writing to deceive. A frequent example of forgery includes forging another person's signature on a legal document.
- Extortion: This is the act of forcing or coercing an individual to give up property, assisted through violence, fear, or the presumption of authority. An example of extortion is blackmailing.
- Perjury: When a person lies under oath, they commit perjury. This criminal act is regarded as the deliberate and corrupt taking of a false oath in a court or legal proceeding.
If you have been alleged to have exploited your authority for financial benefit, you may be confronted with life-changing repercussions. You need an experienced Santa Barbara white-collar defense attorney on your side to fiercely advocate for your rights and freedoms.
What Are Potential Penalties for White-Collar Crimes in California?
While white-collar crimes typically do not involve physical harm, they may significantly damage the financial wellbeing of individuals, families, businesses, and the economy. During sentencing for a white-collar offense, the court considers the harm that victims endured due to the crime. The length of a sentence, amount of fines, or amount of restitution imposed as potential penalties depends on the facts surrounding the case.
Penalties following a conviction of a white-collar crime may include:
- Jail or prison sentence
- House arrest
- Forfeiture of assets
- Fines and restitution
White-collar crimes may be charged as misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the dollar amount involved. For instance, a criminal charge of embezzlement for less than $1,000 may be a misdemeanor offense. Additionally, the prosecution may consider a defendant's criminal background and specific details of the case.
What Are Legal Defense Strategies against Charges for White-Collar Crimes?
The Santa Barbara white-collar criminal defense attorneys at the Aron Law Firm have extensive experience in complex civil and criminal litigation when everything is on the line. Regardless of the state or federal white-collar crime you may be charged with, various defense strategies may be used in your defense, including:
- Lack of intent: The prosecution must prove that you had criminal intent to commit the crime. Suppose you make a significant error on your tax filing, for example, but the error was unintentional. That may be an example of lack of intent and consequently a defense to an allegation of a white-collar crime such as fraud.
- Entrapment: When investigators suspect someone of criminal activity, they may attempt a sting operation to apprehend the suspect in the act. If the defense demonstrates that participating law enforcement officers induced the crime through their conduct, this may be regarded as entrapment.
- Incapacity: If the accused had the insufficiency, caused by either physical or mental inability, to comprehend the suspected criminal acts, then incapacity may be used as the defense.
- Non-fraudulent statements: If the defendant is accused of providing fraudulent material to an accusatory party, the defendant may be able to demonstrate that the accuser behaved unlawfully. In that case, the defendant's statement was mistaken for fraud when in actuality it simply did not benefit the accusing party.
Criminal allegations for white-collar crimes are severe matters in Santa Barbara and across California. Ultimately, the unique circumstances of each case may determine the criminal defense strategy used. No matter what type of white-collar criminal offense you may face, it is imperative to immediately consult a skilled white-collar defense lawyer to devise a thoughtful and robust defense against the allegations you may encounter.
Consult a Seasoned White-Collar Criminal Lawyer Today
At the Aron Law Firm, our Santa Barbara criminal defense attorneys have considerable experience with white-collar criminal and civil law practice that enables us to effectively defend our clients in court proceedings in both state and federal courts. Led by former Deputy District Attorney William M. Aron, our firm possesses expertise with complex financial matters, defending claims nationwide on behalf of those accused of white-collar crimes.
To speak with a white-collar defense lawyer at the Aron Law Firm, schedule a free and confidential consultation by completing a contact form or calling (805) 618-1768.