Conviction for a white collar crime can impact your future career, financial stability and reputation for many years following the initiation of the charges. Once the original charges come through, you may feel like a conviction that carries serious penalties is inevitable.
But conviction for a white collar crime is not necessarily guaranteed, and there are many defenses you can use to protect your interests. These are three of the most common defenses used in white collar crime cases today.
1. Lack of intent
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the motivation behind most white collar crimes is to obtain money, property or services for either a business or personal advantage. If the court cannot prove that you intended to commit a crime, your case may not hold up.
Even if you did not intend to commit a crime, another person or entity may have convinced you to engage in unlawful activities by threatening you. For example, you may be the victim of coercion if another party forced you to sign a fraudulent document unwillingly.
3. Lack of knowledge
White collar crimes often involve multiple people or organizations. Depending on your case, you may not have known that unlawful activity was occurring and that you had participated.
White collar crimes encompass many types of crime, including money laundering, Ponzi schemes, fraud, conspiracy and many others. Every white collar case is different and complex, so there may be multiple defenses you can use in addition to those listed above.