If you are charged with embezzlement or wire fraud, your first phone is probably to a New York criminal lawyer. Just after arraignment, you’ll meet with this criminal lawyer to discuss the facts and circumstances leading to your arrest. In this conversation, the lawyer will also answer questions about the crime and charges against you. Then what?
How can a New York criminal lawyer help in the event of charges for white-collar crime? What defenses exist to these crimes and how can your legal team win an acquittal? In this post, we’ll cover a significant amount of information on white-collar crimes, such as what is white-collar crime, the defenses to these charges, and what you can expect from a New York criminal lawyer like Jeffrey Bettan.
What Is White-Collar Crime?
There are several definitions out there for the term “white-collar crime.” Supposedly, the first use of the phrase was back in 1939, when a sociologist used it to encompass the crimes committed by an otherwise respected person in the course of his employment. Since 1939, there have been significant changes to technology and business, and these changes necessitated an expansion of the term white-collar crime.Today, a New York criminal lawyer, prosecutor, judge, or criminologist would use the words white-collar crime to describe a financial crime that is non-violent in nature and committed by a business or government professional. The motivation for committing the offense must be to gain or avoid losing wealth, property, possessions, or services or to achieve a particular advantage, whether personally or in business. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which regularly investigates instances of white-collar crime further clarifies that these crimes are, “characterized by deceit, concealment, or violation of trust.”
Some examples of white-collar crimes are cybercrime, embezzlement, insider trading, money laundering, and public corruption. As well, most of the crimes involving fraud will fall within the definition of white-collar crime, for example, wire fraud, bank fraud, mortgage fraud, and health care fraud. These crimes can be under state or federal law.
How to Defend Charges of White-Collar Crime
Many of the defenses to white-collar crime are similar and applicable to other types of criminal offense. For example, it is possible to build a defense proving that the defendant is insane or that the crime was committed under duress.
In both of these instances, the defendant and his or her New York criminal lawyer must admit that the criminal activity took place, but the defendant shouldn’t be prosecuted for these extenuating circumstances. Similarly, a New York criminal lawyer can argue that the defendant was incapacitated or intoxicated at the time of the offense, and therefore should be acquitted.
All crimes, whether under state or federal law and irrespective of the type of crime, require a prosecutor to prove the defendant committed the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Therefore, defense to many white-collar crimes focuses on putting doubt into the minds of jurors and showing that there are alternatives or the defendant’s guilt is uncertain. For example, a criminal lawyer can introduce evidence of actual innocence.A defense of actual innocence may include facts or information that make it impossible or doubtful that the defendant committed the crime. This can include showing a lack of motive or need to commit the offense, evidence the defendant didn’t have the information or control to commit the crime, or introducing other individuals as possible suspects. While effective, actual innocence isn’t the most common defense to white-collar crime – entrapment is.
Entrapment is the argument that the defendant only committed the white-collar crime because of coercion or pressure from a government official or law enforcement officer. A criminal lawyer must show that the coercion or harassment directly influenced and persuaded committing the crime, beyond simply providing the opportunity for it.
What Is the Role of a Criminal Lawyer?
Just as a criminal lawyer would handle your defense to murder charges or a theft offense, a New York criminal lawyer handles the collection of evidence, strategy, and execution of your defense to white-collar crimes. These criminal defense services begin with a confidential, free consultation between you and a New York lawyer. In this conversation, the criminal lawyer learns about your situation and starts looking for holes in the prosecutor’s case.
Then, a criminal lawyer begins building a strategy. The sooner a lawyer is involved in your defense, the better. More time allows a New York criminal lawyer to learn more about your business or financial situation, investigate the circumstances leading to your arrest, and build a robust response through evidence. As well, a criminal lawyer will handle communication with the court and prosecutor, ensuring only the necessary facts and evidence are handed over to these parties, including during due diligence and when filing court documents.
If your charges for white-collar crime go before a New York court, a criminal lawyer will also represent you before the jurors and judge. Delivery of your defense is crucial, and an experienced criminal lawyer can provide the best and strongest argument before a court.If you are facing charges of a white-collar crime, contact the Law Office of Jeffrey Bettan today. We will quickly arrange a free, initial consultation at our Long Island offices and start developing a strong defense. You can reach the Law Offices of Jeffrey Bettan at 516-642-6636.