White collar crime is not a legal term, but one we hear often. Typically, a white collar crime is associated with a non-violent crime that is committed by a person or business in a high social status. Examples of white collar crime include: bankruptcy fraud, bribery, credit card fraud, extortion, insider trade, tax evasion, and healthcare fraud.
These crimes are often committed through schemes. However, you might be wondering how do these crimes actually get committed. These high social status crimes are executed through a carefully thought out scheme.
A white collar scheme is how the crime was executed though a plan, design or program. To give a better idea of what this looks like, here is a non-exclusive list of possible ways in which a white collar crime is executed:
- Advanced Fee Schemes
- Airport Scams
- Auto Repair
- Check Kiting
- Coupon Redemption
- Directory Advertising
- Fortune Telling
- Home Improvements
- Jamaican Switch
- Land Fraud
- Odometer Fraud
- Police Impersonation
- Quick Change
How to Prove a White Collar Crime and Scheme
There are four different elements that a prosecution will need to prove when they are prosecuting a person that they believe has committed a white collar crime and scheme.
The first point they will try to prove is that there was specific intent. This typically is when the defendant had the knowledge that what they were doing was unlawful. In addition, a prosecution will attempt to prove that there was disguise and concealment. This means that the defendant worked to make sure they would not get caught by covering up what they were doing.
Another key aspect that the prosecution will try to prove is knowledge that they knew what they were doing was unlawful. The last key point is reliance. Reliance occurs when the victim believed and relied on the defendant’s scheme.
Possible Defenses for White Collar Schemes
When it comes to defending a white collar crime, a huge piece in the defense is proving there was an absence of intent and knowledge. This means that the defendant did not know what they were doing was against the law. Another defense would be entrapment. This occurs when a defendant was coerced by law officials to commit the act.
Punishments for White Collar Schemes
The degree of punishment will depend on the specifics of the case. When a crime was committed that breaks federal law, the penalties will be more severe and harsh. Typically, there will be prison time, fines and restitution, community service, probation, and home detention.
Seek Legal Advice
If you or a loved one is being investigated for a white collar scheme, it is important to seek out legal advice as soon as possible. The State of Michigan takes these kind of criminal acts very seriously and the punishments can be harsh.
Having an experienced legal team on your side will help you as you navigate your questions and concerns. There are a lot of details and additional defense strategies that can be made when your specific case is known by your defense attorney. Please call us today.
Let’s start fighting for your rights.
You might also like to read: White Collar Crime Charges & Penalties