If you are charged with a white-collar crime, you do not have to make any statements to the police, as they may use this against you. Always remember that everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Do not simply give up and enter a guilty plea if you have been charged with a white-collar crime. The consequences may be very serious, and you will be burdened with a criminal record for the rest of your life.

What Kinds of Charges Constitute White Collar Crimes?

White-collar crimes cover a variety of offences, including:

  • False Pretences
  • Counterfeit Money
  • Falsification of Books & Records
  • Real Estate Fraud
  • Forgery
  • Theft Under Power of Attorney
  • Securities Fraud
  • Money Laundering
  • Tax Evasion

What Are the Penalties for These Offences?

A variety of crimes can be covered under false pretences, but the one thing they have in common is that they all involve lying and financial transactions. Generally, the accused allegedly made known a past or present fact that they knew to be false with the intention that the victim would act on the false pretence in a way that is favourable to the accused. The fact may have been exaggerated or depreciated so much that it amounts to a fraudulent misrepresentation of fact, and the accused gained something as a result.

If found guilty of false pretences, the penalty is imprisonment for up to ten years if the amount obtained exceeds $5000. Otherwise, the penalty would be a maximum of two years imprisonment or a summary conviction. Once you are convicted of false pretences, you also become an easier target for extradition under the Extradition Act.

Obtaining execution of valuable security by fraud is an offence where a person intends to defraud or injure another person through false pretences in order to execute, make, accept, endorse or destroy a part or the whole of a valuable security. It is also where the person writes, impresses, or fixes a name or seal on any paper in order to convert it and be dealt with as valuable security. The penalty for security fraud is imprisonment of up to five years.

Anyone who buys and receives or offers to buy or receive counterfeit money has counterfeit money in their possession, or introduces counterfeit money to Canada can be charged with distributing counterfeit money. The penalty for the production of counterfeit money is a maximum of fourteen years in prison.

The charge of falsification of books and records happens when a person, intending to defraud others, destroys, mutilates, alters, falsifies or makes a false entry in a book, valuable security, or document. It also means omitting or altering a material in said document. The penalty is imprisonment of a maximum of five years.

What Should I Do?

When consulting with a criminal lawyer, it is important to be prepared to answer a number of questions, such as the circumstances of the charges, the strength of the case, and any statements you may have released. At Kruse Law Firm, we can pursue a variety of valid defences, according to your particular case and your circumstances. For example, you have the right to be secure against unreasonable search and seizure, as per Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

If you have been accused of a white-collar crime, your first phone call should be 1-800-699-0806. Contact Kruse Law Firm today to tell us more about your case and get the expert counsel you need.