Federal Money Laundering Attorneys in Houston, Texas

Harris County Money Laundering Attorney

Defending Against Money Laundering Charges in Texas

Money laundering is a rather common form of federal white-collar crime. In essence, money laundering involves making "dirty" money earned through illegal activities appear "clean" or legitimate. The person accused of money laundering may be directly involved in the profitable crime, or may simply be a third party who has been taken advantage of by criminals. Money laundering operations are often run through a registered business. The business may or may not provide legitimate goods or services to normal customers. Money may be funneled into the business through falsified transactions, and it will then appear to be the company's legitimate earnings rather than the proceeds of crime.

If you are facing federal money laundering charges, it is important to take the charges very seriously. If you are convicted, you could be sent to a federal prison for years or even decades depending on how much money was allegedly laundered. Bennett & Bennett is highly experienced in defending individuals who have been charged with crimes such as money laundering at the federal level. Not all law firms have the years of experience it takes to successfully defend against federal crimes, but Bennett & Bennett has honed our craft over the course of time. Our attorneys will strive to mount the best defense possible in your case.

The Many Forms of Money Laundering

The term "money laundering" refers to any process for making illegally-earned profits appear to be clean and legal money. Money laundering schemes may be quite simple, or they can be highly complex and sophisticated. A simple money laundering operation may involve renting a storefront that does little or no actual business, then moving illicit funds into the business by recording false transactions. More complex money laundering schemes may involve false investments, buying stocks from a sham corporation, making transfers using cryptocurrency, or engaging in transactions between banks located in different countries.

People who are accused of money laundering may also face other charges. When there is money laundering taking place, the illicit profits generally come from a criminal scheme. Money launderers may be directly involved in crimes like drug trafficking or fraud. Those who are accused of money laundering may also be charged with other types of offenses, potentially increasing the penalties they may face.

However, you need not be directly involved in the criminal scheme that brings in funds to be convicted of money laundering. You do not even necessarily need to know exactly where the money comes from. Even if you are not directly involved in the underlying profitable criminal scheme, you could be charged with aiding and abetting it by helping to conceal the proceeds of illegal activity.

Penalties for Federal Money Laundering

The consequences of a money laundering conviction can be severe. The exact penalties will depend largely on the amount of money involved in a case. Even relatively small amounts of money can result in several years of prison time. Laundering drug money may carry a harsher penalty than the drug crime itself. Laundering very large amounts of money through a complex scheme is treated much more harshly. In some cases, you could face a prison sentence of up to 20 years. You could also be fined up to $500,000 or twice the amount of money involved in the transactions in question.

Even once the judicial penalties are through, it is unlikely that your life will return to normal. You may be unable to secure reasonable employment due to your status as a felon. You may even struggle to find adequate housing. After being released from prison, you may remain on parole for a long period of time. To avoid these consequences, your best option is to work with an experienced white-collar crime attorney who can help you fight against accusations of money laundering or other related offenses. Depending on the circumstances of your case, the attorneys of Bennett & Bennett may be able to take steps to reduce the charges against you or even secure an acquittal at trial.

Contact a Houston, Texas Federal Money Laundering Lawyer

Bennett & Bennett is highly experienced in defending clients who have been charged with money laundering and other federal offenses. Our attorneys focus on providing our clients with a strong defense against federal crimes, and we have developed a number of creative defense strategies to use in federal courts. Contact us at 713-224-1747 to arrange your initial consultation today.

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