Knowledgeable Attorneys Counsel Defendants Accused of White Collar Crime
Accomplished defense lawyers litigate complex state and federal charges
If you are arrested and charged with traditional white collar crime, you should know authorities do not throw such charges around lightly. These cases are hard to make, so investigators are careful to assemble as much evidence as they think they need to make the charges stick before they ask for an indictment. Under such circumstances, you must choose your legal representation carefully to make sure your defense team has the knowledge, experience and resources to challenge a determined team of state or federal prosecutors. At Brennan McKenna Mitchell & Shay, Chartered, our attorneys have more than 100 years of combined legal experience serving the people of Greenbelt and Prince George’s County, Maryland. We have dealt with many high-profile, high-stakes cases of white collar crime, and we’ve been able to deliver positive results for our clients.
How our Greenbelt lawyers fight white collar crime charges
Often, the best way to defend against charges of white collar crime is to get out in front early. You may have notice of an investigation. Authorities may question you before charges are filed. That is the time to contact an attorney and start building your defense. We have had success in cases where we’ve engaged with investigators and offered an alternative interpretation of the facts before them. We have been able to reach settlements and resolutions that did not involve criminal charges. Of course, if you have been charged, the authorities still have a tough case to make, and immediately contacting a strong criminal defense firm is your best move.
Common forms of nonviolent, economic and white collar crime
Traditional white collar crime refers to theft committed by someone entrusted with the care of assets using special, professional skills. However, contemporary technology has changed the landscape so substantially that the term is now applied to a wide array of nonviolent, economic crimes. Today, a person accused of a white collar crime could be a CEO, an IT specialist, or anyone with a credit card skimmer. The types of white collar crime charges we see most frequently are these:
- Fraud is theft by deception, and can be accomplished by various means, including high-tech misappropriation of personally identifying information, or identity theft. Fraud charges depend on the amount stolen and range from 90 days in jail for stealing less than $100 to 18 months for stealing up to $1,000, and up to 15 years in prison for stealing more than $1,000. Fraud commitment by wire, telephone, or the internet can be charged federally and result in more severe penalties.
- Bribery is a crime of public corruption, where one person offers a person in a position of trust an illegal inducement to act in violation of his trust but favorably to the first person’s interest. State and federal laws make it illegal to make, demand, or receive a bribe. Common reasons to offer a bribe are to secure a lucrative contract, to advance specific legislation, and to subvert justice in a court of law. Maryland Code § 9-201 makes bribery of a public employee a misdemeanor resulting in “imprisonment for not less than 2 years and not exceeding 12 years or a fine not less than $100 and not exceeding $5,000 or both.”
- Embezzlement is the crime of stealing something that you have been entrusted to oversee. The offense is generally charged when someone with access to funds and a fiduciary duty to manage them diverts the funds for personal enrichment. The penalty depends on the amount of money in question. A charge of embezzlement is career-threatening for any professional who serves in a position of trust.
- Extortion is the crime of theft by compulsion or intimidation. In other words, the extortionist obtains something to which he is not entitled by putting the victim in fear that something unpleasant will happen. When the extortionist threatens to reveal a secret that will harm the victim’s reputation, cause emotional trauma, or ruin the victim financially, the term is blackmail. When the extortionist threatens violence to the victim, or someone the victim cares about, or damage to property, it’s called a shakedown. To prove extortion, a prosecutor must show the accused willfully and intentionally made a threat for the purpose of obtaining something to which he is not entitled. However, in certain circumstances, the mere taking of property under color of authority presents a sufficient implied threat. Penalties for extortion defend on the value of the property taken. For assets valued at more than $500, the offense is a felony that can result in a fine of up to $5,000, or up to 10 years in prison, or both.
- Tax evasion is the crime of paying less in taxes than one is legally required to do. Depending on the circumstances, people accused of tax evasion may be able to work out a settlement with the IRS without having to make an admission of guilt. However, federal authorities are very aggressive when they suspect a scheme to defraud the government, especially when money laundering seems to be involved. Penalties for tax evasion depend on the amount of money in question but can involve lengthy terms of prison as well as crushing fines.
No matter what form of white collar crime you’re charged with, our firm acts swiftly to protect your rights and represent you effectively until the charges are resolved.
Contact a reputable defense law firm in Greenbelt, MD for white collar crimes
Brennan McKenna Mitchell & Shay, Chartered represents defendants facing white collar crime charges in state and federal courts throughout Maryland and Virginia. Our offices are conveniently located in the heart of Greenbelt, close to the U.S. District Court. Call Brennan McKenna Mitchell & Shay, Chartered at 240-241-7027 or contact us online to schedule a free, confidential consultation.