The term white collar crime originated in 1939 and now the term refers to a wide range of frauds committed by government or corporate professionals. These non-violent crimes are classified by concealment, violation of trust, and deceit and are not associated with physical force or violent acts. Often, these crimes are committed for financial reasons or to obtain power in professional business achievements.
These types of corporate crimes are more common than people realize. Data from the Justice Department reported roughly 3,249 new white-collar crime prosecutions in 2018. The Denver Post revealed that since the beginning of 2021, Denver had approximately 2.8 white-collar crimes reported each day.
Common White-Collar Crimes
The Justice Department revealed the government obtained 18 white-collar crime prosecutions for every one million people in the United States in 2017. There are many different white-collar crimes, but the following are the most prevalent.
Fraud makes up approximately 63% of white-collar crimes, making it the most common. It is both a civil tort and a criminal act. According to the FBI, corporate fraud is still one of the FBI’s highest criminal acts and can potentially lead to damage to the U.S economy.
Fraud is a financial crime of intentional deceit illegally committed in order to deprive another person or organization of monetary value. Fraud is an umbrella term covering various criminal acts associated with deception for personal or professional gain. The penalty for fraud in Colorado is a Class 6 Felony; it is one of the most severe charges under federal and state law.
Misconceptions of Fraud
The U.S Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs states that the most significant myth about fraud is that most individuals can refrain from committing this financial crime when in reality, people who committed this crime come from all social classes, jobs, and economic degrees.
Embezzlement is a criminal act that is a form of theft under CRS § 18-4-403. It refers to illegally obtaining public property and intentionally withholding assets through distrust. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), embezzlement costs American businesses and taxpayers billions of dollars every year. In Colorado, embezzlement is a class 5 felony; penalties for committing this crime include 1 to 3 years in jail and a fine of up to $100,000.
Misconceptions of Embezzlement
A significant myth people believe about embezzlement is that if a company or business does everything by the book for accounting purposes, then there is no crime committed. This is false; employees who commit this criminal act purposely cover their tracks.
Under Colorado Statute CRS 18-3-207, extortion refers to a criminal act of obtaining money or other monetary value utilizing force, threats, or coercion. This can also be considered blackmail; extortion is a class 4 felony in Colorado with 2 to 6 years of imprisonment and up to $500,000 charges.
Misconceptions of Extortion
People believe that extortion is only limited to violent threats; however, victims will often be coerced into these criminal acts because confidential information will be revealed to the public, which could damage families, marriages, and careers.
Contact a Denver Criminal Defense Attorney
Law Office of Kevin Cahill has more than 15 years of legal experience representing clients across Colorado. If you have been charged with fraud or another white-collar crime, it’s crucial to have a strong defense strategy to help you avoid lengthy prison sentences and hefty fines. Our knowledgeable attorneys can help you build the toughest defense possible.
If you’ve been accused of a white-collar crime, it’s essential to ensure you’re well represented. Contact Law Office of Kevin Cahill today. Give us a call at (720) 548-2990! We help discuss all of your options when facing a criminal sentence.