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Los Angeles Criminal Defense Law Blog

What constitutes white collar crime in California?

Facing accusations of a crime is a stressful prospect. If you find yourself in this situation, you could help alleviate at least some of that stress by gaining an understanding of what you face. For instance, you may know that you face allegations of a white collar crime, but you need more information about what that means here in California.

The term "white collar crime" is a general term that applies to a group of offenses. You need to know what exactly government officials accuse you of doing before you can take steps to prepare a defense strategy. If you work in public service, you could face allegations of public corruption, which includes fraud, money laundering and more. If you face other allegations of fraud, it could relate to mail fraud, medi-Cal fraud, wire fraud and more.

Ex-Stanford coach first to be sentenced in bribery scandal

The college admissions bribery scandal that shocked the country has seen its first sentence. A former sailing coach at Stanford University faced charges of racketeering conspiracy in the scandal.

The Washington Post reports that prosecutors sought steep penalties of 13 months in prison and one year of supervised release. However, a federal judge imposed a less harsh sentence of just one day in prison, a $10,000 fine and two years of supervised release, which will include six months of home confinement. The coach, John Vandemoer of California, became the first to receive a sentence out of 50 facing federal charges.

Could tip lines cause false public corruption charges?

The mandate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation is to investigate alleged violations of federal law across the country, including here in California. In doing so, the organization uses a variety of information gathering and investigative methods. In the digital age, one of those tools is the internet. For instance, the FBI has a public corruption webpage, along with other sites such as social media pages, designed to take in tips regarding possible violations of federal law by public officials.

In a politically divisive age, candidates for public office and incumbents need as much of an edge as they can get in order to retain or obtain their positions. Everyone has an opinion regarding what constitutes wrongdoing, especially in the public sector. Both of these circumstances could easily lead to well-intentioned individuals providing false information to the FBI regarding a public official.

Embezzlement, other charges brought against Stan Lee's ex-manager

No one wants to find him or herself accused of a serious crime. Some actions could be viewed by others as manipulative or even illegal, and as a result, a person could face charges for embezzlement and other serious allegations. In such a predicament, it is wise to understand how to potentially defend against the criminal charges.

One man will certainly want to understand his best options after recently being charged in California. According to reports, Keya Morgan was the former business manager for comic book icon Stan Lee. Apparently, an investigation began last year into claims that Morgan was abusing Lee. Lee's daughter stated that Morgan was isolating Lee, manipulating him and attempting to gain control over Lee's financial affairs, which led her to file a request for a restraining order.

Little League treasurer facing embezzlement charge

When individuals begin to have concerns about where money for an organization or company is going, suspicions could quickly come against those in charge of handling funds. In some cases, those suspicions may become so great that an investigation begins to determine whether funds have been inappropriately used. Unfortunately, some parties could end up accused of embezzlement if evidence stacks up against them.

It was recently reported that one woman was taken into custody due to allegedly embezzling funds from a California Little League organization. The woman reportedly acted as treasurer for the organization and came under suspicion when thousands of dollars allegedly went missing. The league's president and other officials asked the woman about the funds, but they apparently did not receive adequate answers. As a result, they contacted the authorities, and an investigation began.

Former Internal Services official accused of public corruption

Public officials are often placed under a great deal of scrutiny. When a public figure is accused of using his or her position for personal benefit, the outcome can be catastrophic. Besides the possibility of a criminal conviction, the official's career and reputation are also on the line. Charges of public corruption require a thorough defense. This is likely the case for one former county official here in California, who recently pleaded guilty to multiple charges related to public corruption.

The former official, who worked in Los Angeles County's Internal Services Department, was charged with accepting bribes and subscribing to a false 2016 tax return where he did not report his full income. Authorities claim that the official accepted bribes from an electrical contractor to approve change orders for work that did not take place. The official admits that the contractor did not do work that followed safety standards and that he looked the other way because of the financial incentive.

When do client dinners and personal gifts cross the line?

Marketers have long made good use of business lunches and gifts to prospective clients. As the pharmaceutical industry has shown, these strategies can bring powerful results. However, the recent conviction of a pharma boss reminds us there's also a point at which these strategies can cross the line and become illegal.

Boston jurors recently declared the founder and CEO of Insys Therapeutics guilty of racketeering. According to NPR, Insys had been bribing doctors and lying to insurance companies to boost the sales of its painkillers.

2 California women charged with white collar crimes

When authorities suspect that crimes have been committed, it is possible for charges to come at the state and federal level. White collar crimes are often federal crimes, and as a result, anyone charged with such a crime could face a serious legal predicament. Federal charges commonly come with more severe consequences in the event of a conviction, so accused parties will certainly want to exercise their various legal rights as their cases proceed.

Two women in California will undoubtedly be handling their cases carefully after recently being accused of insurance fraud. According to reports, one woman operated an insurance agency out of her home and, along with the second woman, convinced an 89-year-old woman to make various financial transactions. The two apparently worked to have the elderly woman liquidate a multi-million dollar investment portfolio, fire her professional estate manager and hire the second woman to manage her affairs, though the woman had no experience doing so.

Public corruption charges for college parents include tax fraud

The national scandal involving admissions into Ivy League universities and other elite institutions, including the University of Southern California and UCLA, has many parents concerned about how far the investigations will go. Some parents allegedly involved in bribery and fraud to obtain admissions for their children into top-notch schools have pleaded guilty and await sentencing. Others know it may only be a matter of time before investigators link them to the claims of public corruption.

Some parents charged with involvement in the nationwide scheme are accused of paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes to ensure their children got into prestigious schools. In some cases, the evidence suggests parents committed fraud by paying to have someone else take the SATs for their children. Investigators say the parents made their payments in the guise of donations to a fake charity.

Shareholder issues can lead to complex civil litigation

Because of the many different people and pieces involved in running businesses, it is common for disputes to come about. Owners, partners, shareholders, employees and numerous other individuals associated with a company could have reason to voice concerns over certain aspects of a company or its actions. However, in some cases, those concerns could lead to complex civil litigation if resolutions to conflicts are not easily found.

California readers may be interested in a shareholder dispute that recently reached a ruling in another state. According to reports, four shareholders of a gas and electric company took issue with the fact that the company had not drafted a clean energy plan that would result in the utilization of 100 percent renewable energy by 2050. They claim that the company used new federal guidelines to get out of creating this plan.

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