DeKalb County Money Laundering Lawyer

Money laundering is a white collar crime that carries serious penalties upon conviction. If you find yourself charged with this crime, contact a DeKalb County money laundering lawyer. The right fraud attorney could provide skilled representation against all of the charges you face, as money laundering often comes with additional accusations such as bank fraud, wire fraud, and illegal wire transfers.

As distressing as these criminal charges are, it is essential to stay as proactive as possible during the investigation process. Hiring legal counsel could give you the best possible chance to dismiss your charges and clear your name.

Georgia’s Money Laundering Laws

Money laundering occurs when someone attempts to hide the location, nature, source, control, or ownership of proceeds relating to unlawful activities. One example would be an individual who owns a car wash they fund with cash acquired from drug sales. Since selling drugs is illegal, using the funds to operate the car wash would be considered money laundering. Other examples of money laundering that may require a DeKalb County attorney’s help include:

  • Trade-based laundering, or changing invoices and other financial documents to present illegally obtained money as business income;
  • Casino laundering, or purchasing casino chips with dirty money, gambling a small amount of it, then cashing the chips;
  • Bank capture, or owning/running a financial institution to move dirty money through the bank and transferring it elsewhere;
  • Structuring, or breaking dirty money into smaller, more inconspicuous amounts, such as purchasing money orders or cashier’s checks to avoid suspicions;
  • Real estate laundering, or buying a piece of real estate and selling it quickly for cash. Mortgage fraud can also apply to real estate laundering if the individual went through a mortgage company to make the purchase.

The state outlines legal financial activities in Georgia Code § 7-1-912. Since money laundering is both a federal and a state crime, a convicted individual could face up to 20 years in prison depending on the violation. The defendant must also pay a fine up to $500,000 or twice the value of the property in dispute.

Defenses That Apply to Money Laundering Cases

The prosecution must show the accused individual intentionally re-routed the illegally obtained funds, meaning that lack of intent can provide a viable defense in many money laundering cases. For example, if an accountant transferred funds on behalf of their client, unaware that the money was obtained through illegal means, they can claim lack of intent since they had no idea the funds were dirty. Bankers and other professionals are often implicated in laundering schemes and could also claim a lack of knowledge depending on their situation.

Duress provides an excellent defense in illegal money cases, such as when an individual disguises funds under the threat of physical violence or death. If a DeKalb County money laundering lawyer makes it clear they did not willfully commit laundering activities, the maximum penalties may apply.

Let a DeKalb County Attorney Take on Your Case

Criminal charges involving illegally obtained funds are serious, so you should contact a DeKalb County money laundering lawyer as soon as possible after you are accused of this offense. One of our team members could take on your case and determine the best defense moving forward. Learn more about your options by calling today to schedule a consultation.