Money Laundering Lawyers
Money laundering is a serious federal offense that typically carries life-changing penalties, including long prison sentences, hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines, and potentially asset forfeiture. If you’ve been charged with a federal crime of money laundering or suspected of being involved in money laundering, seeking immediate and expert legal counsel is vital. At Lowther Walker, LLC., Joshua Sabert Lowther, Esq., and Murdoch Walker, II, Esq. have been successfully intervening and representing clients as federal lawyers. Their decades of experience make them essential to the success of your criminal case. Their entire practice has been built around successfully representing individuals and businesses charged with federal crimes, and they are proud to represent clients at all stages of federal criminal defense prosecution. Specializing in federal criminal defense charges means Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker are well versed with the complicated, unwavering severity of the federal criminal justice system and are experienced money laundering lawyers who are ready to serve you.
What Is Money Laundering?
Money laundering refers to the process of lying, usually through disguise, about the source, amount, or destination of money obtained illegally. This illegal money is commonly referred to as “dirty money,” and is often transferred to bank accounts several times, or through transactions with actual, legitimate businesses. The process of money laundering usually follows three stages:
- Placement- This is when illegal funds are introduced into a legal system via a commercial transaction with a real business.
- Layering- This is when the real business makes complicated financial transactions to move the money around, trying to disguise it so it is difficult to track.
- Integration- This is when money is withdrawn from what looks like a real account.
Money laundering involves the cover-up of criminal activity, therefore the crime of money laundering is rarely charged alone. Because money laundering charges typically involve additional charges, the cases around money laundering can be complex and complicated.
Federal Statutes on Money Laundering
Money laundering became a federal crime in 1986 after the passage of the Money Laundering Control Act. This act consists of two sections that detail how money laundering can be punishable under law, 18 U.S.C. § 1956 and 18 U.S.C. § 1957.
18 U.S.C. § 1956
This section of the Money Laundering Control Act criminalizes four different types of money laundering. These four kinds of money laundering are promotional, concealment, structuring, and tax evasion laundering of the proceeds generated by certain predicate offenses, referred to as “specified unlawful activities.” The government does not have to prove that defendants knew the details of the money laundering activities, only that they knew the funds were obtained illegally, and the transfer of the money was for the purpose of concealing the funds.
18 U.S.C. § 1957
This section of the Money Laundering Control Act refers to individuals or businesses that commit money laundering when they “knowingly engages or attempts to engage in a monetary transaction in criminally derived property of a value greater than $10,000.” To be charged with a violation of this statute, the federal prosecution must prove that individuals or businesses knew that the money they were transferring was obtained illegally.
Other Crimes Associated with Money Laundering
Not only confined to drug trafficking, as many people think, money laundering is not uncommon among other white-collar crimes in health care fraud, insurance fraud, wire fraud, and mail fraud. At Lowther Walker, LLC., Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker have decades of experience in a broad range of federal criminal defense charges and trials. Their deep experience with the federal court system makes them valuable assets to any client in need of a money laundering lawyer in Atlanta, or nationwide. Having experience with all kinds of white-collar crime makes Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker ideal representation for anyone facing a money laundering charge.
Penalties for Money Laundering
It’s important to keep in mind that because money laundering is typically charged on top of an underlying crime (like drug trafficking or fraud), and that any penalties incurred with a money laundering conviction would be on top of any penalties incurred on other charges.
Money Laundering penalties are notoriously severe. Under section 18 U.S.C. § 1956, charges carry maximum fines of $500,000 for each individual transaction charged and a maximum prison sentence of 20 years. Under 18 U.S.C. § 1957, charges carry a maximum penalty of up to 10 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines. Businesses and organizations charged under this section face fines up to $500,000.
Possible Defenses for Money Laundering
Over the years, the federal government has increased its ability and scope with which it can investigate and prosecute money laundering and related crimes. Experienced representation with Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker will explore all the viable options for defense in a money laundering charge. Sometimes people who deal with large amounts of money as part of their daily jobs are implicated in white-collar crimes like money laundering without being knowledgeable of the crime or charge. Additionally, people may be threatened with harm if they do not comply with money laundering schemes. Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker, as experienced money laundering lawyers, know how to approach each potential defense for a successful outcome. Mr. Lowther and Mr. Walker are experts at picking apart the government’s evidence to present additional, valuable, and strategic information that casts doubt with the jury and judge.
When Should I Get a Lawyer if I’m Charged with Money Laundering?
Money laundering is a very serious crime with severe consequences. Investigations into this type of white-collar crime can take weeks, months, even years to put together. Because the process can be complicated and lengthy, it’s imperative that if you or a loved one is facing an investigation or charge of money laundering that you retain experienced defense counsel with federal criminal defense experience as soon as possible.
Can I Be Charged with Money Laundering?
Even though you might not have committed an underlying offense, if you helped move any dirty money through financial systems through various transactions, you can be charged with money laundering. Having knowledge that the funds you moved were obtained illegally and knowingly trying to conceal or attempt to conceal these funds can make you complicit in money laundering.
Even if you were only passively involved in a means to conceal illegally obtained funds, you can be charged as a co-conspirator to underlying events of fraud or trafficking. The government could try to make the case that without your furthering of the funds, additional criminal activity would not have taken place.
Call an Experienced Money Laundering Lawyer Today
As money laundering and other white-collar crimes have become more sophisticated and common, the government is bringing more charges against individuals and businesses. If you’re being investigated or have been charged with money laundering, or any other white-collar crime, you need to hire an experienced federal criminal defense attorney. Lowther Walker, LLC. is conveniently located in Atlanta, Georgia, near the Hartsfield Jackson Airport for maximum convenience and ability to serve clients locally and nationwide. Mr. Walker and Mr. Lowther welcome the opportunity to win your case.