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Maryland Federal Money Laundering Misconceptions

One of many laundering misconceptions is about the tax evasion component of the crime. People mistakenly believe that when a person derives funds from illegal activity they do not have to pay taxes on them and cannot be prosecuted for tax evasion. The general public gets Maryland federal money laundering misconceptions from inaccurate movies and television shows. That is where most misconceptions about criminal laws and the criminal justice system come from.

People involved in criminal activities are not going to pay taxes and accurately report that the money came from criminal activity. Nonetheless, the law requires one to do so. People do not understand that and do not realize that they can be fully prosecuted for failing to pay taxes on the criminal activity, whether it is drug dealing or some other fraudulent activity. For a better understanding of an illegal transaction related case, contact a skilled federal money laundering attorney immediately.

Common Money Laundering Questions

Anyone charged with a crime wants to know the penalties they face. That is an understandable initial question and goes hand-in-hand with questions about how to best defend against the charges because the penalties are so severe. The defense lawyer’s response to the individual’s questions is to identify the alleged evidence against the individual and determine how to attack that evidence. The lawyer looks for errors on the government’s part and establishes whether their evidence is incomplete to prepare a successful defense to the charges.

What Does the Government Need to Prove in a Laundering Case?

Under the law, the government must prove that the money came from illegal activity. The government might not be able to prove that a person was specifically involved in the underlying illegal activity, but were involved in trying to disguise the illegal origins of the money. That person could still be prosecuted for money laundering even though they were not involved in the initial criminal scheme.

If there is a large drug distribution ring generating millions of dollars and profit for the people involved and they are not sophisticated enough to launder the money to make it appear that it comes from a legitimate business. They employ another person who has the sophistication to assist them in doing so.

That person does not necessarily have involvement in the underlying drug transaction because they came in afterward to assist with hiding the money. That person can also be investigated, prosecuted, and convicted of money laundering. Maryland federal money laundering misconceptions include the level of involvement someone has in a crime. People believe if a person is not involved in the initial unlawful conduct, they cannot be prosecuted for what happened later. That is not true.

Federal Offense Penalties and Consequences

Maryland federal money laundering misconceptions regarding penalties is usually about jail time. Regarding the penalties for federal crimes prosecuted in federal court, it is common for even a first offender to spend some time in jail or prison because federal law and federal sentencing can be harsh. It is critical that an individual charged with a federal crime such as money laundering understands what is at stake and the seriousness of the situation. Often times, when there is concurrent jurisdiction over a certain type of crime, the state court penalties are much less harsh than when the same crime is prosecuted in federal court.