Articles Posted in Theft Crimes

The Department of Justice investigates and prosecutes cases where large amounts of money is alleged to have been taken. Examples of white collar crimes are money laundering, bank, wire and mail fraud, tax evasion, insider trading, insurance fraud, mortgage fraud, bribery and embezzlement.  Of course Homeland Security, the FBI, the IRS, Customs and Border Patrol and SEC can also investigate and prosecute cases of fraud as well.  

The government has a special United States Guideline Chapter dedicated to “basic” economic offenses.  For purposes of this blog, this chapter will be discussed in more detail below.  As with anything involving federal criminal litigation, nothing is crystal clear in the law. Therefore, there is also a chapter in the United States Guidelines dedicated to tax offenses, election fraud, gambling, and money laundering in the United States Sentencing Guidelines.  

This USSG chapter DOES cover extortion, bribery, kickbacks, counterfeiting, embezzlement, health care fraud, computer fraud, insurance fraud, securities fraud, mortgage fraud, identity fraud, bankruptcy fraud, etc.   What is most important in this chapter is the loss amount.   All charges start off with a base offense level of  6 or 7 depending on the statutory max of the offense charged. Then, you look at what the “loss amount” is using the below table.

Loss (apply the greatest) Increase in Level
(A) $6,500 or less no increase
(B) More than $6,500 add 2
(C) More than $15,000 add 4
(D) More than $40,000 add 6
(E) More than $95,000 add 8
(F) More than $150,000 add 10
(G) More than $250,000 add 12
(H) More than $550,000 add 14
(I) More than $1,500,000 add 16
(J) More than $3,500,000 add 18
(K) More than $9,500,000 add 20
(L) More than $25,000,000 add 22
(M) More than $65,000,000 add 24
(N) More than $150,000,000 add 26
(O) More than $250,000,000 add 28
(P) More than $550,000,000 add 30.

The loss amount is a pandora box of confusion and the government is able to add all kinds of relevant conduct and intended loss conduct to inflate these numbers.

To further make things complicated, there are enhancements in this section that permit the government to add levels for things such as the use of sophisticated means, role in the offense, number of victims, a defrauding a charity, mass marketing, among others.

Navigating the federal criminal system is a task that should not be endured alone. Contact our team today for more information about we can protect your rights and your freedom.

Life can be messy. This is the fundamental truth that being an Atlanta criminal defense lawyer has taught me. We all know what living in modern American society is like. Stressed-out, overworked, we all strive to pay the bills, raise our families, find love and happiness, maintain employment, stay away from abusing alcohol or drugs, and somehow keep juggling all the balls of day-to-day life. When a Good Decent Law-Abiding Citizen is arrested, it often means that one of these balls got dropped.

Working with my clients has taught me better than any philosophy class that as human beings we are all innately fallible. As a criminal defense lawyer I have no need to be reminded that “to err is human”- I see it every day. My clients are people like these:

· Sasha, on scholarship to an exclusive private college in Boston. Under pressure to conform to the lifestyles of her wealthy friends, she succumbed to the pressure to shoplift a party dress “just this once.” The store’s policy against selective prosecution landed Sasha in jail and sent her parents frantically seeking legal advice.

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