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When Should You Get a Lawyer?
The interesting thing about White Collar Criminal acts, which differentiates it from other kinds of criminal acts, is that the person accused often knows that they are being investigated for a White Collar criminal case far earlier than they would know if they were being charged with a regular criminal offense. For that reason, it gives them an opportunity to get a jump start on speaking with an attorney to protect themselves.
White Collar Criminal cases are cases that often involve things like bank records, so if accused you might get asked by the police to access records or to answer some questions about recent financial activities. One might think that answering these questions is harmless, but if there is a reason that they believe they are being investigated, it is important to talk to an attorney to determine whether or not having that conversation would be helpful or harmful to them.
Most often when a federal or state investigation is taking place, officers are asking to speak to an individual. As nice as they might seem, their goal is try and get information to support the prosecution of their case. So it is important to remember that even if you think that you are talking to an officer and you are being completely truthful to them because you don’t have anything to hide, sometimes your words can get twisted and prompt even further suspicion.
What Evidence Is The Government Looking For?
The evidence that they are going to look for is going to be different depending on the charges. So in a bank fraud case, the evidence that they might be looking for is if somebody passed a bad check or tried to deposit a check that was not properly written to them might be bank records, talking to the people whose accounts are affected, or finding out if the signature on the check was legitimate. They will be conducting an investigation specifically based on what the allegations and charges are.
What Agencies Investigate White Collar Criminal Cases?
The agencies that you can expect to be involved are anything from your local police department all the way up to federal agencies. The Securities and Exchange Commission would be investigating White Collar Criminal activities that might be associated with securities fraud, which are things that happen in the stock market. The FBI would certainly be involved. The FDIC would be involved if it is a bank fraud case, and the United States Secret Service is often called in to investigate cases that are White Collar crimes.
So there are all kinds of agencies of the federal government that might be involved in White Collar investigations. Thus the investigation might not result in you being criminally charged but might yield months or even years of investigation. You will have to deal with people who are potentially investigating you for that period of time which can be an extremely big headache that you want to try and avoid it if possible.