Ask a Financial Crime Lawyer: What Is White Collar Crime?

If you work with a company or government body, then you’ve most likely heard the term white-collar crime. These types of crimes are characterized by violating trust or engaging in concealment and deceit and similar non-physical misdemeanors. There are many types of white-collar crimes you can be accused of, and a financial crime lawyer can talk you through each of them in-depth. Where going to cover some of the most common crimes now.

Ask a Financial Crime Lawyer: What Is White Collar Crime?

1. Fraud

The term “fraud” is broad, so it encompasses several different types of crime. However, all of these crimes are typically done in an attempt to defraud people of money. A common way to do this is by offering to send an individual a large sum of money if they send a small fee first. Typically the fraudster will claim this small fee to a lawyer for processing the transaction. Once the fraudster receives this fee, they’ll never send out the large sum that was promised.

Financial crime lawyers in Houston can explain all the different types of fraud in more detail if needed.

2. Insider Trading

Certain employees are privy to non-public information provides them with a major advantage in, for example, the stock market. Essentially, if you know for any reason that a company’s stock is about to rise in price, then purchasing it before this becomes public knowledge is considered insider trading.

One reason the company’s stock prices for lawyers may rise is if a second company is planning to acquire the first. If this acquisition is public knowledge, then it’s not a crime for people to flock to the stock and purchase it before the price rises. However, it’s considered unethical to do so before this is public knowledge.

3. Identity Theft

identity theft is becoming more and more common thanks to the internet lawyer. Losses from this type of theft have cost the United States billions of dollars over the years. Tens of thousands of cases are often reported per state every year.

The stolen identities can then be used to gain access to large financial accounts or properties to benefit the individual or an entire company. Stolen identities are also commonly sold on the dark web for an individual or company’s financial gain.

3. Embezzlement

Embezzlement is a financial crime involving theft. Some forms of embezzlement involve transferring millions of dollars from the company’s account to your own. However, simply taking a few dollars here and there out of the petty cash drawer counts as embezzlement, too.

Embezzlement is one of the white-collar crimes it’s easiest to be accused of. A simple case of management miscounting the cash in a retail employee’s checkout could get them accused of embezzlement. However, usually, embezzlement occurs on a much larger and more serious scale.

4. Money-Laundering

Criminals often deal with large amounts of cash that comes from illegal or unethical sources. As a result, they need to “launder” this money. The cash must be funneled through various accounts and, eventually, into real businesses. The revenue from these legitimate businesses ensures the source of the start-up funds is no longer identifiable.

5. Computer Hacking

Businesses or individuals may engage in computer hacking to find information for financial gain or blackmailing purposes. This crime may also be committed as a threat or warning to a competing company.

6. Counterfeiting

Although the government has taken steps to make counterfeiting more difficult, it’s still a major issue. These days, around one in 10,000 bills are fake. There are even rumors stating that counterfeit copies are available within an hour of a new note being released into circulation.

Companies and individuals may wish to counterfeit cash to appear more affluent. They may also use counterfeited cash to pay for unethical goods and services. In extreme cases, they may use this cash to purchase services from a competitor, then they’ll report the competitor for trading with counterfeited cash.

What Are the Different Classifications of White-Collar Crimes?

Individual

An individual or group of individuals lawyer who commits a crime within an organization will be charged with an individual crime. Identity theft and other digital crimes are common types of individual crimes. Fraud schemes, computer hacking, counterfeiting money, and many other types of crime can also fall into this category. The individual’s or group’s employer typically has no knowledge of the crimes being committed within the company.

Corporate

If the people in charge of a company let all the employees engage in a crime, for example, an insider trading scheme, then the offense may be considered a corporate crime. Money laundering is another common offense typically conducted on a corporate scale.

If you are unknowingly or unwittingly caught up in white-collar crime, then an excellent defense attorney will be able to help you fight those charges. If you knowingly committed a white-collar crime, then an attorney may still be able to help you receive a less severe punishment for it.

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