Tulsa, OK White Collar Criminal Defense Lawyer
Former U.S. Attorney
White collar charges are serious. Not only do convictions carry enormous fines, lengthy prison sentences, professional repercussions, and long probationary periods; in Tulsa they are frequently pursued by federal law enforcement agencies like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) or the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). These agencies have nearly unlimited resources at their disposal, making for intense investigations that are bound to uncover all of the relevant evidence to your case. Even if white collar offenses are prosecuted by state law enforcement agencies, like the local district attorney’s office or the Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office, the consequences of a conviction can be the same.
The white collar defense attorneys at The Criminal Defense Firm has a track record of successfully defending people accused of white collar crimes, including defendants in Tulsa, Oklahoma. With the savvy defense strategies and vigorous advocacy that our team of lawyers can provide, numerous defendants have secured trial acquittals, persuaded prosecutors to drop the charges, or managed to mitigate the penalties of a conviction.
White Collar Crimes in Tulsa, Oklahoma
A “white collar crime” is one that is:
- Non-violent, and
- Motivated by financial gain.
In most cases, white collar crimes involve fraudulent conduct. Fraud, however, is a vague term that encompasses a wide variety of courses of action. These all involve deception, deceit, or misrepresentation, but these are ill-defined terms themselves.
This is not a mistake, though. Lawmakers have deliberately defined “deceit” and “fraud” in vague ways in order to let prosecutors pursue criminal charges against businesses and individuals that engage in suspicious ways that might not technically break existing law.
However sound this might be, the reality is that it exposes innocent defendants to serious allegations of fraudulent conduct. Defendants in Tulsa who do not think that they are committing a criminal offense can nevertheless find themselves accused of one.
Examples of White Collar Offenses
The specific type of charge that you can face will depend on the circumstances and the context surrounding the allegedly fraudulent or deceitful behavior. Just a few of these charges can be for:
- Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) fraud
- Government contractor fraud
- Bank fraud
- Bankruptcy fraud
- Credit card fraud
- Mail and wire fraud
- Public corruption
- Computer fraud
- Insurance fraud
- Identity theft
- Simple theft
Securities fraud, including:
Healthcare fraud, including:
- False billing
- Medicaid fraud
- Tricare fraud
- Medical license fraud
- Laboratory investigations
- Compound pharmacy fraud
- Home health and hospice fraud
- Qui tam allegations under the False Claims Act
- Prescription drug fraud
Medicare fraud issues, like:
The white collar criminal defense attorneys at The Criminal Defense Firm have represented clients who have been accused of all of these offenses, as well as other offenses that are not listed.
State or Federal Prosecution May Follow
Depending on the circumstances, white collar offenses can violate Oklahoma state law or federal law. In many cases, they violate both. When they violate both, either the state or the federal government can pursue criminal charges. In some cases, they perform a joint prosecution.
The difference between state and federal investigations are not small. While the state of Oklahoma is not an easy opponent to face in court, the federal government, through one of its law enforcement agencies like the DOJ, FBI, or the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), is of another level. They have access to investigative resources that states do not, increasing the pressure on defendants who are facing federal allegations of wrongdoing.
The Criminal Defense Firm, however, has extensive experience representing clients against federal allegations of white collar crimes – far more experience in federal courtrooms than other, similar law firms in Oklahoma. Many of our lawyers and top investigators have decades of experience as law enforcement agents within these same federal agencies before leaving for The Criminal Defense Firm to represent defendants, instead.
Convictions Come With Heavy Penalties
Whether they are state or federal offenses, convictions for white collar offenses carry steep penalties. These penalties take several different forms:
- Jail time
- Criminal fines
- Restitution payments
- Disgorgement or forfeiture of ill-gotten funds
- Professional sanctions, often including the suspension or the revocation of licenses or certifications that were necessary to facilitate the offense
The monetary penalties alone are often crippling. It is not uncommon for white collar defendants to be facing the potential for millions of dollars in financial penalties upon conviction. This can pressure even the strongest defendants into considering a plea deal that reduces the financial obligations.
Worse, many white collar crimes are interrelated. It is very typical for defendants to face multiple charges for the exact same course of conduct. A good example of this is mail and wire fraud. These offenses carry huge penalties for using the mail system or a telecommunications device – such as a phone or the internet – to further a fraudulent scheme. If you are accused of embezzling people, and you used email to communicate with them, you will likely face both embezzlement and wire fraud charges. Each of these can carry substantial penalties for a conviction.
Potential Legal Defenses to White Collar Charges
White collar crimes are notoriously document-heavy and testimony-light. This makes defending against these claims very different than defending against other criminal charges, like property crimes or violent offenses. The factual circumstances are often clear to see because they are written down, whether in bank statements or emails.
As a result, the legal defenses against white collar allegations tend to be different than for other charges. Five common ones are:
- Illegal search or seizure, which argues that law enforcement overreached during its investigation and violated your civil rights under the Fourth Amendment. This can trigger the exclusionary rule, which excludes from trial any evidence obtained as a result of the violation,
- Entrapment, which claims that police coerced you into committing an offense that you would not have committed otherwise,
- Lack of intent, which aims to show that you did not have the specific intent to defraud people when you acted,
- Lack of knowledge, which tries to prove that you were unaware that what you were doing would be used by others to complete a white collar crime, and
- Misleading statements were mere opinions, which tries to undermine the claim that you misrepresented facts by showing that you were just expressing your opinion.
Some Frequently Asked Questions About The Criminal Defense Firm’s Legal Representation for White Collar Crimes in Tulsa
When Should I Call a Lawyer?
As soon as you suspect that you are under investigation for a white collar offense.
Delaying in hiring a defense team is the most common mistake that defendants make in the criminal justice system. This is especially problematic for white collar cases because the law enforcement investigations for these offenses can take months or even years to get to the point where a criminal charge is filed. Many defendants ignore clear signs that they are under investigation and only contact an attorney when they have been formally charged. This puts their defense team months or years behind the prosecution. It also means that your defense firm cannot proactively defend your case during the investigation stage, when exculpatory evidence can be presented to show that there is little to investigate. At The Criminal Defense Firm, these early stages are when we are often most able to resolve the case.
Why is a Lack of Intent Not Always the Best Defense?
Because white collar offenses can lead to either criminal or civil liability, and a lack of intent is only a defense to criminal cases.
Lots of inexperienced white collar defense lawyers, or even experienced criminal defense lawyers who have not done many white collar cases, rely on a lack of intent from the outset to defend against a criminal allegation. Even if they succeed in creating doubts about your intent, law enforcement can just pivot their case to a civil enforcement. Because the factual circumstances of the criminal charge were not challenged while your defense focused on your lack of intent, there is often little to be done to avoid civil liability, which still carries steep financial repercussions.
Why Should I Hire You?
The Criminal Defense Firm has a stellar track record of successes in white collar defense cases, in no small part because our firm only hires senior-level attorneys with decades of experience handling these kinds of cases. This means that all of the legal work that you receive is done by a senior attorney, not by a paralegal or a junior associate.
Why Don't You Call Your Firm the Best at White Collar Defense in Tulsa?
Because that is something that we would rather let our prior clients say about our firm. You can read their testimonials here.
The Criminal Defense Firm: White Collar Defense in Tulsa, OK
The white collar criminal defense team at The Criminal Defense Firm helps defendants in Tulsa, Oklahoma, overcome serious allegations of misconduct. Contact them online or call their law office at (866) 603-4540 for the legal representation that you need at this difficult time in your life.