South Florida Criminal Defense Attorney Explains Money Laundering

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1st Oct 2015

A South Florida criminal defense attorney can explain that Florida’s money laundering laws are based on the notion that people accused may use a variety of creative methods to transport money that was illegally-acquired, intending to conduct other illegal activities with these funds.  Under Florida law, it is illegal for individuals and entities to use financial transactions in order to conceal their original illegal source.  A South Florida criminal defense attorney can also explain that being charged with a crime of this nature is serious and may wind up with even more additional charges, such as Federal or State RICO charges.

There are several ways that a person may find themselves under investigation for money laundering.  For a person to be convicted of money laundering under the Florida statute, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant had the intent to promote the furtherance of a particular illegal activity as specified under the statute.  Money laundering can consist of the act of conducting financial transactions, transporting money or taking part in particular racketeering activities.

Being charged under Florida’s money laundering statute can result in a first degree felony conviction.  The type of felony is based on the amount of the financial transaction.  A conviction may result in imprisonment of up to 30 years with the possibility of even more time for habitual offenders.  Additionally, the defendant may also be required to pay a fine up to $250,000 or $500,000 if the conviction is a second, subsequent conviction.  A criminal defendant may also be charged civilly for these acts, resulting in a civil penalty of $25,000 or the actual value of the transaction involved, whichever equals the higher amount.

Individuals who believe that they are being investigated for these types of crimes should seek immediate legal counsel in order to protect their rights and the likelihood of being charged with such crimes.