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A white collar crime is a nonviolent crime usually involving cheating or dishonesty in commerical matters. White collar crimes are so named because the origin of the crimes stems from businessmen in corporate jobs stealing money from their employer, shareholders, or others. Due to the complicated nature of white collar crimes, there is no set penalty for white collar crimes. In many cases, a person is not charged with just one white collar crime, but many.
Some of the many crimes considered white collar are securities fraud, counterfeiting, embezzlement, extortion, blackmail, forgery, money laundering, and tax fraud. Misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, and felony are the three categories a white collar crime could fall under.
Misdemeanor—This is the minimal charge for a white collar crime, and ussually involves very little money. The maximum penalty for a misdemeanor is 90 days in jail, $1,000 fine, or both.
Gross Misdemeanor— This is the second level of infraction for a white collar crime, which involves more money than a misdemeanor, but less than a felony. The maximum penalty for a gross misdemeanor is one year in jail, $3,000 fine, or both.
Felony—A felony charge generally involves significant amounts of money. It can result in lengthy prison sentences and fines in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. In addition, convicted felons lose many rights, such as the right to vote or own firearms.
Protect your Rights
If you are under investigation for a white collar crime, even if you have done nothing wrong, it is important to have competent representation for every step of the investigation. Because of the personal nature of many white collar crimes, it is difficult for prosecutions to gain access necessary without violating your rights. Contact the attorneys at Gaskins Bennett Birrell Schupp LLP for a consultation regarding your situation. Our attorneys will ensure that your rights are protected throughout the investigation.