What is a white collar crime and what are some examples?

What is a white collar crime and what are some examples?

White collar crimes include things like lying, cheating and stealing from others. Basically, these crimes are financial in nature; they are based in fraud. Although no one actually gets physically injured in a case of fraud, that’s not to say there isn’t a victim or even multiple victims.

There are many kinds of fraud that can be classified under the umbrella term “white collar crime.” For example, insurance fraud, identify theft and mortgage fraud can all be types of white collar crimes. Others may include piracy, securities fraud and financial institution fraud.

With white collar crimes, it’s possible that the fraud is something as easy as taking a few cents per transaction and putting them into a foreign bank account for personal use, using someone’s credit card without permission, or selling an item you don’t intend to deliver.

If you’re accused of participating in a white collar crime, it’s important that you stand up for yourself immediately. These crimes are recognized at the federal level in most cases, and that means that you could be facing time in prison and excessive fines.

It’s possible for a person to be involved in a white collar crime without the knowledge that he is participating or causing harm to other people. For instance, a secretary simply following orders may not know he’s destroying evidence that the courts would be looking for. In that kind of case, it’s important for the secretary to make it clear that he was an unintentional accomplice; in some ways, he would also be a victim himself because of being used by the people committing the fraud.

Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation, “White-Collar Crime,” accessed March 18, 2016

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