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Three questions about money laundering

You may wonder why you should care about money laundering. The fact is having a basic understanding of white collar crimes is beneficial to everyone. This includes entrepreneurs aiming to set up a successful business endeavor and associates within a business working to build their career. Regardless of your status in the business world, having a basic understanding of these crimes can help you to ensure you are not balancing too closely to the edge between legal and illegal practices.

Money laundering is one of a number of criminal charges that falls into the broader category of white collar crimes.

Although generally nonviolent, these crimes come with harsh consequences. As a result, it is wise for entrepreneurs throughout New York to have a clear understanding of these crimes to help better protect their businesses from false allegations.

What exactly is money laundering?

Money laundering is defined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) as the process used to conceal or disguise the money gained through criminal acts. The ultimate goal of money laundering is to make it appear as if the money was gained through legitimate means.

How is money laundering accomplished?

There are generally three steps to money laundering.

The first involves placement, or putting the money gained by illegal means into the financial system. This could be done by opening an account at a financial institution or through purchasing securities.

The second, layering, refers to moving the money around. This is done in an attempt to separate the funds as much as possible from the alleged criminal activity.

The third, integration, occurs when the person accused of money laundering regains the money in a manner that now makes it appear legitimate.

What should I do if I am charged with money laundering?

If you or your business is facing allegations of money laundering or other white collar crimes, it is important to take the charges seriously. These charges are a bit of a double edged sword. In addition to potential criminal penalties that can include harsh monetary penalties and prison time, societal consequences also apply. These charges can hurt your reputation and have long lasting implications on your career.

Defenses are available. Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer to help better ensure your interests are protected.

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