What Is White-Collar Crime?

White-collar crime in Texas is the illegal use of a person's financial or occupational position for their own personal gain. In Texas, these offenses are usually prosecuted at both the state and federal levels, with punishments depending on the severity of the crime.

In general, any activity that involves deception or false pretenses to secure an unfair advantage over another party is considered a white-collar crime. These activities can take place in a variety of contexts such as business settings, government organizations, educational institutions, and even charitable causes.

Examples of White-Collar Crime

White-collar crime is an umbrella term that describes a variety of financially motivated, nonviolent crimes committed by individuals or businesses. These offenses generally involve some form of fraud or deceit in order to gain financial or other benefits.

Examples of white-collar crimes include the following:

  • Insider Trading: This white-collar crime involves the use of privileged information gained through employment or other relationships to make money on the stock market. It can also include the purchase and sale of stocks based on that insider knowledge.
  • Money Laundering: Money laundering is a process used to conceal the source of illegally obtained funds from law enforcement officials. The goal is to make these funds appear as if they were lawfully earned, but criminals often use this method to hide their criminal activity.
  • Embezzlement: This occurs when someone steals money or property from an employer or organization that they have been entrusted with. It’s often done by taking advantage of a position of trust and taking small amounts of money over time, making it difficult to detect.
  • Bank Fraud: Bank fraud is the act of using false information or documents to gain access to bank accounts or credit cards in order to steal money or assets without the owners’ knowledge or consent.
  • Tax Evasion: Tax evasion involves avoiding paying taxes on income or other financial transactions through illegal means such as filing false tax returns, underreporting income, and claiming improper deductions.
  • Bribery: Bribery occurs when someone is paid money, goods, or services in order to influence the actions of another. It’s illegal in most countries and can be considered a form of corruption.
  • Identity Theft: This type of crime involves stealing someone’s personal information such as their name, address, Social Security number, credit card numbers, and other sensitive data for financial gain.
  • Investment Fraud: Investment fraud typically involves falsely promoting investments with the intention of getting people to invest money into them without disclosing the risks involved or providing false information about the returns investors can expect from these investments.

White-collar crimes are often difficult to detect and prosecute due to their complexity and lack of physical evidence making it important to be aware of the different types of offenses and how they can affect individuals, businesses, and societies. As such, it’s important to seek legal advice if you believe that you have been a victim of one of these types of crime.

What Are the Penalties for White-Collar Crime?

The penalties for white-collar crimes in Texas vary widely based on the severity of the offense. Some offenses, such as fraud or embezzlement, may be punishable by long prison sentences and large financial penalties. In other cases, probation or community service might be appropriate for minor offenses.

In addition to criminal punishments, those convicted of a white-collar crime in Texas may also face civil penalties and restitution payments. Civil damages include paying back victims for any money lost due to the crime, while restitution is an agreement to repay a victim with money that was illegally acquired during the course of committing a white-collar crime. It’s important to note that these civil penalties are separate from criminal penalties and should still be taken seriously.

Contact Us for Legal Assistance

White-collar crimes can have serious consequences not only on those convicted but also on the victims involved, so it’s important for Texans to be aware of these potential risks. Fortunately, with the help of an experienced attorney, many people accused of white-collar crime in Texas can avoid the worst outcomes.

If you’d like to speak with one of our experienced attorneys about how we can help you defend against your charges, contact Rodriguez & Gimbert, P.L.L.C. to schedule a consultation.