What Are the Consequences of White-Collar Crime?
The Definition of White-Collar Crime
The definition of white-collar crime provided by the FBI is crimes that are financially motivated and generally nonviolent in nature. This includes public corruption, health care fraud, mortgage fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering.
What Are the Penalties for White-Collar Crime?
Penalties Under Texas Law
Under Texas law, a theft offense that involves more than $1,500 is a felony. The degree of felony and length of incarceration time depends on the amount of money the state can prove was stolen. For example:
- Theft of $1,500 to $20,000 is a state felony with prison time of between 180 days and 2 years. A fine of up to $10,000 may also be imposed.
- Theft of $20,000 to $100,000 is a third-degree felony with prison time between 2 and 10 years. A fine of up to $10,000 may also be imposed.
- Theft of $100,000 to $200,000 is a second-degree felony with prison time of between 5 and 99 years. A fine of up to $10,000 may also be imposed.
Judges may issue lighter sentences if they believe it will still serve the purpose of punishment. This may happen when the judge notes that this is a first offense, the defendant does not pose a danger to the community, and the defendant is not likely to commit another offense in the future. Penalties may then include community service, work release and/or fines.
Penalties Under Federal Law
Federal judges follow the US Sentencing Guidelines which consider many factors including but not limited to:
- The amount of money in the offense. In federal court, the judge may consider the amount of money that could have been lost by the white-collar scheme, not the actual amount that was lost.
- The number of victims who lost money
- How severely the victims were impacted
- Whether the offense involved direct theft
Under both state and federal law, in addition to the penalties discussed, your assets may be seized by the government if the government believes your assets were gotten by using illegal money you gained by committing the white-collar crime.
Being charged with a white-collar crime has serious implications for your future and changes your life. If convicted, you can lose your freedom for many years, have your assets seized and incur a hefty monetary fine. Choosing an attorney that has extensive experience both prosecuting and defending serious white-collar criminal charges is essential in achieving the best possible outcome for you and your family.
Consult a White-Collar Criminal Defense Attorney
You need a lawyer who has a track record of success. Attorney Michael J. Wynne is that attorney. He is a Harvard-educated criminal defense attorney who has devoted many years to representing clients charged with white-collar crimes. Attorney Wynne knows how the other side works. He spent years as a federal prosecutor before becoming a defense attorney. He knows what tactics prosecutors use against defendants. He puts this knowledge to work in defending his clients.
Contact Michael J. Wynne to schedule your 30-minute consultation either online or by calling (713) 487-7975.