White collar crimes are nonviolent crimes that can range from fraud to tax evasion. Many of these are considered federal offenses and carry steeper punishments and higher fines. These are often heard in the news regarding corporate America’s fortune 500 companies but anyone can be found guilty of a white collar crime. Some of the more common white collar crimes include wire fraud, identity theft, and money laundering.
Wire fraud, also known as telecommunications fraud, is when someone uses a wired service such as the internet or telephone to fraudulently make purchases to falsely gain a profit. In order to be convicted, the court must prove you willingly participated and was aware in its fraudulent nature. It doesn’t matter if the scheme was successful; the crime is in the intent. Penalties depend on the amount of money lost, the intended amount, and the number of parties involved.
Another common white collar crime is identity theft. It involves using someone else’s identity for profit or to defraud the victim. This is becoming very common with the use of technology through website hacks, stealing someone’s credit card numbers, or phone call scams. It is almost routine to see a person get taken advantage of on the news. Again, someone could be convicted on a state or federal level depending on the severity and amount in question.
A white collar crime that is often done simultaneously with other is money laundering. Money laundering is the funneling of a large amount of money into several different accounts to hide the fact that such a big sum was acquired. This can be done through private accounts or international accounts that are difficult to be tracked by the government. Money laundering goes hand in hand with other crimes such as drug trafficking, gambling, and counterfeiting.