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Family and Criminal Law Blog

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Overview of White Collar Crimes

Crimes are categorized in a number of ways. Some are violent and some nonviolent. Sometimes crimes are referred to be level of severity such as a misdemeanor or felony. Other times crimes fall into other specific categories. Have you ever heard of a white collar crime? Here we go into more detail into what exactly a white collar crime is.

What is a White Collar Crime?

Generally speaking, a white collar crime is considered to be a criminal offense that is non-violent and financially motivated. Those engaging in white collar crime activity are participating in an illegal act in order to produce financial gain through use of deceptive techniques. White collar crime got its name due to the fact that most of those participating in such crimes are in the business world. It is common for white collar crime to arise as a result of a business person illegally leveraging their job position to take advantage of accessing substantial amounts of other people’s money.

Many of those who find themselves participating in white collar crime activity are actually first-time offenders. They are otherwise law-abiding citizens who have found themselves in the midst of illegal activity either due to being unaware that the activity was actually in violation of the law or because they find themselves in dire financial straits. It is important to note, however, that a person may be found guilty of a white collar crime if the criminal acts were intentional or unknowingly committed.

There is a wide range of crimes that fall under the white collar crime umbrella. Some are complex and far-reaching financial schemes, such as Ponzi schemes and insider trading, among other types of securities fraud. Other times, a white collar crime will be limited in reach and circumstance, such as an insurance fraud scheme involving an individual trying to collect insurance after filing a false claim. White collar crimes can also be at the federal or state level.

Embezzlement is a crime that often comes to mind when white collar crime is discussed. Embezzlement involves a person improperly taking money from a person to who a certain duty is owed. For example, embezzlement would include an employee illicitly taking company funds.

Other examples of white collar crimes include:

  • Bribery
  • Counterfeiting
  • Forgery
  • Identity theft
  • Mail fraud
  • Mortgage fraud
  • Property crimes
  • Securities fraud
  • Wire fraud

Criminal Defense Attorneys

White collar crime can be a very complex area of law and involve extensive review of financial records, such as tax documents and other financial statements. The penalties for a white collar crime conviction can be severe. Those found guilty of white collar crimes may face substantial restitution payments on top of sizeable fines. Incarceration is also possible. For legal representation you can count on in the face of a criminal charge, Navarrete & Schwartz is here to fight for you. We are proud to serve the residents of Midland, Texas. Contact us today.


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Navarrete & Schwartz, P.C. is located in Midland, Texas and serves the surrounding cities and counties, including: Odessa in Ector County, Andrews County, Martin County, Howard County, Winkler County and Crane County.



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