White-collar crimes are probably more common than you realize. These crimes are actually quite complex, and many people do not understand exactly what they entail. The advent of the internet has made it easier for the average Joe to engage in white-collar crime – sometimes, completely inadvertently. Better understanding white-collar crime can help you avoid a similar fate.
What Is White-Collar Crime?
White-collar crime refers to a wide range of criminal actions that include money laundering, fraud, and corruption. White-collar crimes can be grand in scale, but they can also be much simpler in scope. In essence, white-collar crimes are usually non-violent criminal acts that involve deception or theft for someone’s own personal financial gain. While these crimes often occur in the workplace, this is not always the case. All of the following qualify as white-collar crimes:
- Money laundering
- Tax evasion and other tax crimes
- Ponzi or pyramid schemes
Some white-collar crimes are clearly criminal activities, while others are often less black and white. For example, misappropriating client money is obviously a crime, but selling services or products that are not everything they are touted to be may not even resonate with someone as being criminal – but it certainly can be.
Common White-Collar Crimes
White-collar crimes come in myriad forms, but some of the most common include:
- Corporate Fraud – At its most basic level, corporate fraud refers to intentionally misrepresenting a corporation’s financial information. For example, reporting false numbers that make a business look far more profitable than it actually is.
- Embezzlement – Embezzlement is the act of secretly stealing from a business or organization (usually by an employee or by someone who has been trusted with the entity’s financial information, such as an outside bookkeeper).
- Tax Evasion – Taxes are unavoidable. When a corporation or individual engages in fancy maneuvering in an effort to artificially decrease the taxes they owe, it is called tax evasion – and it is illegal.
- Money Laundering – Money laundering refers to circulating money that was acquired illegally by engaging in elaborate tactics to help make the funds appear legitimate.
- Health Care Fraud – Healthcare fraud encompasses a wide range of white-collar crimes that include fraud perpetrated by medical professionals, such as false billing, and by patients who, for example, use false identities to obtain care on someone else’s policy.
Discuss Your Questions and Concerns with an Lawyer
Do not face criminal charges alone. Attorney Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen is committed to applying his considerable experience and skill to building your strongest case – in defense of your rights and for your case’s most favorable resolution. For more information, please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.