Many Louisiana residents celebrated another fun-filled Fourth of July holiday recently, and took the occasion to enjoy the freedoms held by those in our country. These freedoms are cherished by all, yet often times they may be taken for granted until they are threatened. While many people think of this threat coming from overseas conflicts and the like, in reality, many individuals may find the greatest threat from criminal charges that have the potential to take their freedom upon a conviction.
Louisiana residents often take their fundamental rights for granted until they are threatened. When people suddenly find themselves the subject of an investigation and the target of criminal charges, some of their most fundamental rights are in jeopardy.
Many Louisiana residents are familiar with the basic principle that a person is presumed innocent until proven guilty. These are not empty words, as the government has a high burden of proof in criminal trials to prove a person committed a criminal act beyond a reasonable doubt.
Recently, this blog discussed various types of white collar crimes, which usually involve some form of dishonesty or theft. Financial crimes are taken every bit as seriously by police as drug crimes or violent crimes. Insurance fraud is one type of white collar crime, a crime that one Louisiana firefighter has recently been accused of.
Crimes are categorized based on the type of crime involved. For instance, most people in Calcasieu Parish are aware that there is a difference between federal crimes and state crimes. Although you may not know what the differences are, there is most likely an understanding that federal and state crimes are handled in separate ways. Whether or not an alleged crime is prosecuted in state court or in federal court is dictated by the alleged crime itself. Some alleged crimes can be prosecuted in both courts and when this happens, the powers that be make a decision on the matter.
White-collar crimes often present serious penalties for anyone who is convicted on federal charges. Louisiana residents may know that white-collar charges, such as fraud, bank fraud, mail fraud, immigration fraud and embezzlement, typically involve money obtained through acts of deception. These cases are often investigated by federal agents to determine how someone made off with money that was not theirs.
White collar or financial crimes are complex cases. In Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, many fraud cases have stemmed from erroneous document control and accounting. When authorities see discrepancies in documentation, they may open an investigation to determine if any crimes have been committed and if someone should be held responsible. Allegations of fraud and other white collar crimes often lead to ostracization and people being accused of such cases have to defend themselves to avoid serious consequences.
Not everyone accused of a white-collar crime is a criminal. Unfortunately, even honest professionals can be wrongfully accused of committing an offense, often because of circumstances beyond their control. Generally, white-collar crimes such as embezzlement, identity theft, pyramid schemes, money laundering, forgery and insider trading stem from illegal activities involving money. Just a single error on a financial document can lead to an allegation of fraud.
White collar crimes are serious offenses. In Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, most people know about white collar crimes or fraud offenses. Sometimes, those who are charged with fraud-related offenses are professionals involved in financial transactions. A single error in documentation can lead to an investigation involving federal officials. It is important to note that white collar crimes come in various forms and one of the most well-known is the Ponzi scheme.
Fraud and other white-collar crimes affect Louisiana's citizens as much as citizens in any other state. In many cases, the nature of the crimes means that the federal government will cooperate with local and state authorities to investigate. Money laundering is one of the most common types of fraud and is typically fueled by criminal activities such as drug enterprises, illegal gambling and prostitution.