White collar crime is a diverse legal category that covers a lot of different types of criminal activities. These activities are generally performed by “professionals” who work in offices and deal with insurance, accounting, medical billing and other financial matters. Here are three different types of white collar crimes with their meanings:
Money laundering: When a criminal organization acquires money through illegal activities, that money is usually acquired “under the table,” and when the criminal organization or actor suddenly uses that money to carry out a large public transaction, it might tip off authorities — who will wonder where the money came — resulting in a criminal investigation. Money laundering is a process of making the money look like it was legitimately acquired through dummy business deals.
Ponzi schemes: A Ponzi scheme is an unlawful investment scam that involves gathering a pool of investors to invest in a project that will supposedly reap rewards for the investors. What happens in a Ponzi scheme, however, is money acquired from new investors is used to pay the old investors their “income.” When new investment money runs dry, the Ponzi scheme will go bust and the newest investors will suffer the most harm.
Bribery: Bribery involves the use of money, gifts or some other benefit to influence another person — usually a public official, politician or government worker. When a politician accepts a bribe, both the politician and the person offering the bribe could be guilty of the crime.
If you’ve been accused of any type of white collar crime activity, you will want to take your criminal defense seriously to reduce the chances and/or severity of criminal punishments and other negative consequences resulting from your charges.