A company receives a subpoena from the government requesting financial records. A group of federal agents show up at a business and seize records and computers. FBI agents question key employees outside the office. The receipt of a letter from the U.S. Attorney’s office indicating that the recipient is the “target” of a grand jury investigation. What do these events indicate? The existence of a federal investigation. The goal of a federal investigation is to obtain evidence to use in a criminal trial. Once charges are brought, there is a 95% chance that a conviction will occur. Too many people fail to take protect themselves in these early stages of a proceeding and end up in prison.
A lawyer experienced in white collar criminal matters can eliminate or mitigate the risks associated with a federal investigation. It is never too early to retain the services of a white collar criminal defense lawyer. In fact, the earlier a white collar criminal defense attorney is involved the case, the greater the prospects for a successful conclusion to the case. Our most successful representations involve the government declining prosecution.
There essentially three categories of white collar offenses: frauds, corrupt practices and false statements/obstruction charges. Despite the connotation associated with the term “fraud,” these charges are common in cases where a transaction has gone badly for some person or some group of people even if the subject of the investigation did not intend to defraud anyone. Common fraud charges include:
Corrupt practices include a variety of schemes that subvert the normal operations of a government and can be directed at federal, state or local government operations or at foreign governments under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. False statements, as the name implies, involve a s statement that is made to a government official that was false and known to be false when it was made, and obstruction of justice includes any activity that impedes a government investigation. We have represented hundreds of individuals and businesses in white collar investigations and trials involving all of these offenses.
Cyber crime is a newer form of white collar crime. It falls into several different categories: computer “hacking,” internet fraud schemes, child pornography and national securities offenses. Cyber crime is a constantly evolving area of the law that involves not only the most up-to-date knowledge of the law but also knowledge of computer and internet operations and access to the most highly qualified experts. With the rise of sophisticate cyber schemes such as Botnet or Trojan infections, innocent individuals may find themselves facing charges for materials that they did not know had been downloaded to their hard drives or for actions taken by a hacker who gained access to their computers.
Regardless of the offense involved, we can help. We have represented hundreds of individuals and companies in internal investigation, subpoena responses, grand jury appearances, negotiations, trials and appeals. With the help of a white collar defense attorney, the subject if an investigation is more likely to see an investigation end without charges or avoid a conviction if charges are brought.