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What is white-collar crime?

On Behalf of | Mar 20, 2020 | Criminal Law |

When you hear the term “white-collar crime”, you may wonder what exactly this means. This term refers to a specific kind of offense and it is important to understand what white-collar crime looks like. It is also important to know how it is different from other criminal offenses.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation says that white-collar crimes are different forms of fraud. You might commit corporate fraud if you perform insider trading. You might also change your account statements so your books represent a positive financial state. Additionally, investment fraud is another type of white-collar crime. This type of fraud targets people who are trying to invest their money by offering them investment opportunities that are too good to be true. Investment fraud can also come in the form of Ponzi or pyramid schemes.

Money laundering is another kind of white-collar crime. In this situation, you might hide the source of your money to make it look like your money came from a valid source. Additionally, intellectual property theft is also considered to be a kind of white-collar crime, as well as identity theft. Health care fraud and mortgage fraud also fall under this category.

You may think that you have to physically harm someone to commit a criminal offense. While physical harm can be an element of many criminal offenses, it is not an element of white-collar crime. White-collar crime is serious because of the danger it poses to people’s finances. You may do irreparable damage to a family’s or a company’s finances. These offenses are different from general criminal offenses because someone who commits white-collar crime typically conceals information for financial gain.