Money Laundering Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale Taking Action to Protect Your Rights
You work hard for your money. You’ve spent years – maybe even decades – slowly building up your savings, making wise investments, and being frugal with your spending. So, the last thing you want is for the government to come in and take it all away from you under the suspicion of money laundering.
Money laundering is a serious white-collar crime that can result in heavy fines and jail time if convicted. If you are facing money laundering charges in Fort Lauderdale, it’s important to have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side who can help you navigate the complex legal system and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.
At George Reres Law, P.A., you can rest assured that you are in good hands. Attorney George Reres has years of experience handling complex criminal cases, and he knows how to build a strong defense against money laundering charges. He will work tirelessly on your behalf to ensure that your rights are protected and that you have the best possible chance of avoiding a conviction. Contact George Reres Law, P.A. today at 954-543-1186 for a free initial consultation.
What is Money Laundering?
The term “money laundering” is used to describe a wide range of activities involving the illegal use or concealment of funds derived from criminal activity. The goal of money laundering is typically to make it appear as though the funds have been obtained through legitimate means, such as through employment or business dealings, when in reality, they were gained through illegal activity and criminal proceeds, such as drug trafficking or embezzlement.
There are a number of ways in which money laundering can occur. For example, a person who illegally sells drugs may use the proceeds to purchase expensive items through multiple financial transactions, such as jewelry or luxury vehicles, which can then be sold for cash. The cash can then be used to purchase property or invest in legitimate businesses, making it appear as though the funds were obtained legally.
Another common method of money laundering is known as “surfing.” This involves breaking up large sums of cash into smaller amounts and making multiple bank deposits over a period of time in order to avoid detection. Money laundering is often portrayed in movies and television shows as involving a suitcase full of cash, but the reality is that most money laundering today is done electronically. If you are facing money laundering charges, it is important to have an attorney who is familiar with the latest methods of money laundering and knows how to investigate and disprove these allegations.
What are the Criminal Penalties for Money Laundering?
In Florida, there are a number of statutes that cover different aspects of money laundering. The most common charge is engaging in a transaction involving proceeds derived from criminal activity, which is covered under Florida Statute 896.101. This statute applies when someone knowingly engages in a financial transaction – such as making a deposit or withdrawal, transferring funds electronically, or exchanging currency – using proceeds that they know or should know are derived from certain types of criminal activity, such as drug trafficking or racketeering.
This is a third-degree felony, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine. However, the penalties increase to a second-degree felony – punishable by years in prison and a $10,000 fine – if the amount of money involved is $20,000 or more. If the amount of money involved is $100,000 or more, the charge becomes a first-degree felony, which is punishable by even more prison time and a $10,000 fine.
In addition to these charges, someone who is convicted of money laundering may also be required to forfeit any property that was obtained with laundered funds. For example, if you are convicted of money laundering, and it is determined that you used laundered funds to purchase a house, the court may order the house to be forfeited.
What are Some Possible Defenses to Money Laundering Charges?
While money laundering is a serious charge, there are a number of defenses that can be raised to fight these allegations. For example, if the prosecution cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you knew or should have known that the funds in question were derived from criminal activity, then you should not be convicted of money laundering. Additionally, if the government cannot prove that you actually engaged in a financial transaction using the laundered funds, then you also cannot be convicted.
Another possible defense is “innocent ownership.” This defense applies when the property in question – such as a house or car – was purchased with laundered funds, but you can prove that you did not know that the funds were derived from criminal activity. For example, if you are married and your spouse is the one who engaged in money laundering, you may be able to raise this defense if you had no knowledge of your spouse’s illegal activities.
Not all money laundering lawyers are the same. Ultimately, hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney is the best way to ensure that you have the strongest possible defense against money laundering charges. An attorney will be able to review the facts of your case and determine which defenses are most likely to be successful. Additionally, an attorney can negotiate with prosecutors on your behalf and may be able to get the charges against you reduced or even dismissed entirely.
Contact George Reres Law, P.A. Today For Strong and Compassionate Service
If you are dealing with a money laundering charge, it is important to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible since this is deemed a federal crime. The Money Laundering Control Act has empowered prosecutors to seek convictions for money laundering cases. An attorney will be able to check the facts of your case and help you determine the best course of action. Additionally, an attorney can work to negotiate a plea deal with the prosecutor in your case. Money laundering lawyer George Reres is dedicated to providing his clients with the best possible defense and will work tirelessly on your behalf. Contact our law firm today at 954-543-1186 to get the criminal defense attorney you need for your case.