While common, the white-collar crime of money laundering is a serious one. If you are charged with money laundering, you stand to incur significant fines, restitution, incarceration, and a permanent criminal record. Money laundering is charged as a felony. A conviction can affect your ability to get a job, rent a home, buy a home, or pursue additional education. It’s important to launch a solid defense against money laundering charges. This tactic increases the chances that the charges against you will be dropped or that you will be found innocent.
Money laundering is considered an intent-specific crime. This means that if there was no intent to commit the crime, the accused cannot be considered guilty. In order to use this defense, you must have evidence that shows you lacked intent. For example, you may be able to show that you were unaware that the money was illegal. Talk to an attorney about different ways you can prove that no intent existed.
The prosecution must have a sufficient amount of evidence in order for a jury to convict you of money laundering beyond a shadow of a doubt. One key piece of evidence is to find the illegal origin of the money. If prosecutors are unable to find the origin of the money, they may have difficulty proving that it was ever laundered in the first place.
In some cases of money laundering, the person being accused of the crime was actually forced to by another person. If you or your family were threatened with harm if you did not launder the money, or you otherwise had reason to believe you or your family would be in danger, you may be able to argue that you only committed the crime under duress. Depending on the other evidence available, your attorney may be able to argue for the reduction or dismissal of the charges against you.
When it comes to federal crimes like money laundering, your future is on the line and the stakes are high. It’s crucial that you consult with a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible to learn how to protect your rights under California law. Call for a consultation now at (626) 600-3437.