White-collar crimes are often committed by the prospect of financial gain, usually at the expense of another’s ignorance or through the offender’s position in a workplace or another role. These crimes can occur through the misuse of electronics, communication devices, the federal mailing system or another related means. Common white-collar crimes are:

  • Tax evasion
  • Embezzlement
  • Money laundering
  • Securities fraud like insider trading or investor fraud
  • Insurance fraud
  • Ponzi schemes
  • General business scams

These crimes often involve transferring funds or assets electronically or over state lines and, consequently, this sort of transaction turns what may be a state crime into both a state and federal crime.

If you face charges for a white-collar crime, the odds are good that you may see time in a federal court. In fact, the federal government actually has the constitutional authority to regulate and legislate white-collar crimes.

Note also that defenses in which a person charged with a non-white-collar crime may use may also be used by those charged with white-collar crimes. For example, intent to defraud or take advantage of another may come into play in your defense argument.

Consequences and complications

Each white-collar criminal case is unique. Some may involve an entire organization. Others may involve a single person. The crime may start door-to-door and then move to a digital means of communication. The potential for a complex paper trail and ensuing damages is vast.

Basically, issues of misconduct can be difficult to evaluate with white-collar crimes. The issues may become especially more complicated if the government is the victim, which is not uncommon in white-collar cases, rather than an individual or business. As a result, federal courts will likely approach these crimes on a case by case basis.