Many persons appear to adhere to the misbelief that “white collar crime” is not a serious offense. In the first place, they think there is no force or coercion involved. They take the attitude that says: “Nobody gets hurt”, or “The kind of money this outfit makes, I deserve more”, or “The way this outfit throws money around, they’ll never miss a few bucks here and there”.
According to the latest FBI calculations, white collar crime costs our country over three hundred billion ($300,000,000,000.00!!)dollars a year in lost revenue. And today, in this computer age, white collar crime via the internet augments more rapidly than ever before.
- What does the State of Texas define as White Collar Crime?
While many persons would never dream of robbing a convenience store or stealing from another person, they nevertheless rationalize stealing from their workplace acceptable. Whether it be a few ballpoint pens or real cash, they tell themselves they have it coming considering the extra work they put into their job. But no matter how they rationalize their actions, the State of Texas considers that a crime and it is punishable by the courts.
There are many ways to rationalize white collar crime but it is still a crime. Generally speaking, what is known as white collar crime would be a crime that does not involve any sort of violence. This sort of crime is dishonesty, misrepresentation of a service or product with the intent to defraud; any sort of deception in financial dealings, etc.
Usually, this sort of criminal activity would involve employees, business associates, public officials, entrepreneurs trying to, or pretending to be trying to raise funds for a project and many other sorts of crime for financial gain.
Some of the more serious crimes that could be classified as white collar crimes would be embezzlement, credit card fraud, tax evasion, and money laundering among others.
Any form of misuse of the computer and the internet with the intention of seeking money from anyone, whether it appears that the “victim” or “mark” would be acting in an honest, or a dishonest fashion. Computer fraud is the fastest growing opportunity for those whose intentions are dishonest and would constitute one form of white collar crime.
Any sort of activity that involves the encouragement of services or information from another in exchange for favors or money constitutes a crime. This normally involves public officials or others in a position to convey information or to use their influence to benefit the party that pays them in tax-free dollars.
Credit Card Fraud
With the widespread use of credit cards and ATMs, a growing number of individuals take advantage of this to create ever-new ways for unlawful personal gain.
Stolen credit cards are often misused until either the rightful owner or the issuer of the cards closes the account. There are a number of variations of this activity. Another common way of gaining money through fraudulent means is through making application for a credit card in the name of someone who has a clean record and good credit rating. Even though such a fraudulent account might not last long, the issuer, and ultimately, when the accounting is all done, everyone connected to the bank or other card-issuing entity, will be affected by what many continue to consider a “victimless crime”.
Health Care Fraud
There are hospitals and clinics as well as individuals that consider health care fraud scarcely a crime, although, in the aggregate, it costs our government millions of dollars yearly.
Individuals too, often manage to act in a criminal way in the purchase or sale of drugs, application for health care services, and again, as with credit cards, they may use another person’s information to gain a member card.
US Government Fraud
This sort of white collar crime is very prevalent. A great many persons feel the government doesn’t do enough and wastes too much money so why shouldn’t they take advantage of the bonanza?
Government fraud can take the form of falsely gaining funds for fictitious programs, housing, educational as well as many other programs.
There are many types of fraud, too many to enumerate in the space allotted here, but the bottom line is that the procurement of gain through any but strictly legal means, is stealing. It is fraud. And it is illegal and punishable by the courts.
Here are a couple of real-life examples of the punishment that a white collar criminal may face:
In the State of Texas, a resident charged with health care embezzlement finally confessed to having charged the government for non-existent employees. He found himself liable for a fine of a quarter million dollars and a ten-year prison sentence.
Recently five people were convicted of income tax fraud involving some nine million dollars. If space permitted many other examples might be cited.
Although to many, white collar crime may appear to be less serious than other sorts of crimes, it is very serious and punishment can be quite severe, especially here in Texas.
If you do find yourself accused of white collar crime, or any other offense, http://AttorneyATX.com and talk to Jackson F. Gorski. I’m here to help.