Miami Federal Offenses Attorney
Are you facing a federal crimes charge in Miami, Shouth Florida, or anywhere in the U.S.?
DIRECTLY FROM MR. GRIECO:
“If you are reading this page, you or a loved one are either under federal investigation or have already been charged by the Federal Government. Regardless, the likelihood is that you feel lost, scared, confused, uninformed, and maybe even embarrassed. The last thing you expected to be doing in your life would be surfing the internet for an attorney regarding the Federal matter pending. I hope that you find the information below helpful, but if you need more information and/or need someone to talk you off the ledge, please call my office. I handle Federal cases nationwide and hopefully I can provide some insight into your situation. I may not necessarily tell you what you want to hear, but it will be the informed truth.”
Federal crimes are some of the most serious crimes you may be charged with. Involving more severe offenses than other charges, you can expect the investigation of these crimes by the prosecution to be extensive and very thorough. Many times these crimes can involve investigation by federal authorities, such as the FBI and other federal agencies. This results in sentencing guidelines that will require much harsher penalties than a state or local charge. When facing this type of charge, consult with a Miami Criminal Defense Attorney to assist you with a strong defense against any pending action against you. By retaining the services of The Grieco Law Center, our firm can begin an effective investigation into the facts surrounding any criminal charge you may be facing.
If you find yourself charged with a federal offense or feel that you may be under investigation by the federal authorities, you need to contact an experienced criminal lawyer immediately. In a nutshell, there are two ways in which you can be charged with a federal offense. First, the more common charges stem from a violation of federal law. These offenses could included, but are not limited to: Narcotics Trafficking, Child Pornography and/or Internet crimes, White Collar crimes, Immigration violations (such as illegal re-entry after deportation), Firearms offenses, Terrorism offenses, Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) offenses and/or Conspiracy charges, and Gang-Related offenses. The second and less common way that you can be charged with a federal offense is by committing a crime on federal property. This could include, but is not limited to: airports and/or airplanes, Federal government buildings and Federal/National parks. The resources that are spent investigating Federal offenses are often much greater than those spent on State offenses. Federal investigations are conducted by Federal agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). It is important to note that Federal prosecutions differ greatly from State prosecutions. They typically move much faster and the defense is provided less discovery. Unlike State court, depositions are not taken in Federal court. In addition, the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure make obtaining a pretrial bond much more difficult than in the State court system. For all of these reasons, if you find yourself facing a federal charge, you will need the immediate assistance of an experienced criminal trial attorney. Some of the common federal crimes we represent our clients for include the following:
- Wire Fraud
- Mail Fraud
- Health Care Fraud
- Mortgage Fraud
- Credit Card Fraud
- Drug Offenses
- Weapons Offenses
Related Federal Crime Stories in the News: U.S. Department of Justice – “Inglewood, California Man Charged with Federal Identity Theft” In a federal court in the Western District of Washington a man sentenced to four years in federal prison for aggravated identity theft and bank fraud. He led a bank fraud ring to steal from individual bank accounts.
U.S. Department of Justice – “Riverside Gang Members Arrested For Federal Drug Trafficking” In a Federal United States District Court in Riverside, California, six men linked to the Mexican Mafia were charged with possession with intent to distribute and trafficking methamphetamine, drug trafficking, weapons violations and attempted murder.
Defending Your Rights in Federal Court
Because of the extensive investigation you are likely to face by federal prosecutors for federal crimes charges, we encourage you to contact our office at The Grieco Criminal Law Center as soon as possible. The complex task of determining what evidence they have against you will take exhaustive research and documentation. Federal crimes charges are often long term investigations that deal with many witnesses, financial records, warrants and plea bargains that require the expertise of a professional firm such as ours. For a free initial and confidential consultation, contact our office today.
Federal crimes charges are serious charges that can vastly impact your life. Contact our office today to find out how we can help you with a strong defense.
Mail fraud is one of the most common and pervasive federal criminal charges out there, often because it is committed alongside several other federal and state-level crimes. Mail fraud entails creating and implementing a plan to make money or gain something of value by offering a false or untrue investment opportunity, service, or product. As defined by legislation 940. 18 The U.S.C. Section 1341, mail fraud has two key elements: having devised or intending to devise a scheme to defraud (or to perform fraudulent acts), and use of the mail for the purpose of executing or attempting to execute the scheme. Mail fraud involves sending contracts, receipts, or communications regarding a plan to defraud other individuals or organizations across state lines via the United States Postal Service or any other private mail carrier.
There are various kinds of mail fraud that target specific demographics, including senior citizens, veterans, and unemployed people. Other popular cases include sweepstakes and lottery fraud and telemarketing fraud. It is worth noting that mail fraud cases are valid even when communications originate outside of the mailing system or migrate from communication via mail to other digital forms of communication.
The statute of limitations for mail fraud is 5 years unless the violation occurs against a financial institution, in which case the statute of limitations is 10 years. The range of sentences vary, but individuals can face up to $250,000 in fines and up to 20 years in prison. Organizations, by contrast, can face up to double the penalties and just as much imprisonment. Fines and jail time can get as high as 2 million dollars and a lifetime in prison. It is also worth noting that mail fraud violations are tried per count or instance of mail fraud. Every letter sent, every contract sent, and every piece of evidence sent through interstate mail are tried individually and can result in the group or individual facing hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and up to decades and decades of imprisonment.
As with most criminal activity, sentencing is scaled to the severity of the actions. Intent to commit mail fraud can result in a conviction, though it will be less lengthy and severe as those who have effectively implemented and profited from mail fraud.
The only scenario in which mail fraud cases remain within state jurisdiction is if the violations occurred within one state. If no fraudulent activity occurred between multiple states, the federal government does not have jurisdiction. Mail fraud runs parallel to wire fraud, which is a federal statute that expands upon mail fraud to include modern digital and analog methods of devising and executing fraudulent schemes.
Wire fraud has many of the same legal parameters, and sentencing guidelines as mail fraud, except that wire fraud, involves the intent to or execution of a scheme to defraud another individual or organization through alternative forms of communication, including phone calls, the internet, and television. Wire fraud is undoubtedly a 20th and 21st-century phenomenon, and it is expansive in its definition. Congress initially passed a wire fraud statute as an extension of mail fraud in 1952 to account for fraud by wire, radio, or television. It has since been amended many times to encompass 21st-century technology like cell phones, social media, the internet, and emails as means of fraud.
As spelled out in the U.S. Department of Justice Criminal Resource Manual section 941.18 U.S.C. 1343, there are four central facets of wire fraud: that the defendant voluntarily and intentionally devised or participated in a scheme to defraud another out of money; that the defendant did so with the intent to defraud; that it was reasonably foreseeable that interstate wire communications would be used; and that interstate wire communications were in fact used. Much like mail fraud, sentencing will decrease in severity according to intent and execution. However, it is essential to understand that intent to commit wire fraud can result in fines and prison time.
The sentencing structure for wire fraud is identical to that of mail fraud. As a federal crime, wire fraud is considered a Class C felony and carries the threat of both fines and prison time. For individuals, sentences result in fines up to $250,000 and imprisonment of up to 20 years. For organizations that have committed wire fraud, penalties include up to $500,000 in fines and up to 20 years imprisonment.
The statute of limitations for wire fraud is 5 years, except when it impacts a financial institution. In this case, the statute of limitations for wire fraud is 10 years, and sentencing possibilities increase. While wire fraud is a punishable federal crime in its own right, it is often committed in conjunction with other state and federal crimes. Because of this, federal agents often use wire fraud to expose other illegal activity and actively pursue cases of wire fraud. When fighting wire fraud charges, it is critical to aware of the big picture and the context in which you took questionable actions.
Health Care Fraud
Much like the health care system in this country, health care fraud is complicated, widely varied, and treacherous terrain to negotiate. There are countless windows of opportunity for violations of federal law, and the subsequent investigations and sentencing that occur are just as convoluted. Indeed, health care fraud is perhaps one of the most challenging areas of white-collar crime to navigate for perpetrators and investigators alike.
Health care and medical professionals are in unique positions to commit health care fraud, but it is rampant among the general public. Private citizens make false claims through Medicaid and Medicare programs or private insurance programs for profits. Consumers also commit health care fraud by loaning their insurance cards to others, using others’ insurance cards, and duplicate filing claims for services that were never given. Health care fraud committed within the medical industry includes writing unnecessary and unneeded prescriptions to be sold on the black market, modifying medical records, accepting kickbacks for member referrals, and waiving member co-pays. These violations of health care fraud statues only scratch the surface of fraudulent health care activity.
The F.B.I. considers health care fraud to be a top priority for the Complex Financial Crime Program and allocates significant resources towards actively targeting, investigating, and prosecuting health care fraud crime. Why? Because studies estimate that as much as 10 cents of every dollar put into the health care system go towards paying faulty claims. Numerous agencies work in cooperation with the F.B.I. to catch instances of health care fraud, including the Drug Enforcement Administration (D.E.A.), Health and Human Services-Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), Medicaid Fraud Control Units, and National Health Care Anti-Fraud Association, among others. Health care fraud could be subject to state laws as well as national federal laws.
As with wire fraud and mail fraud, health care fraud is charged per count, so one violation will result in a far lesser sentence than multiple, repeated, and calculated fraudulent health care schemes. Depending on crime, context, and intent, sentencing can result in fines up to $250,000 for individuals and $500,00 for organizations, restitution orders, probation, loss of medical licenses, and jail times from 5-10 years. If you are fighting health care fraud charges, seeking the right professional counsel is critical because health care fraud presents such a massive and complex web of criminal acts, federal and private investigations, and varied sentencing precedents.
Mortgage fraud falls under the umbrella of financial institution fraud and entails manipulating or misrepresenting various facets of real estate transactions, mortgages, property, or loans. There are two broad types of mortgage fraud: fraud for profit and fraud for housing. Mortgage fraud committed by industry experts with the aim of gaining money or equity from lenders or homebuyers can be categorized as fraud for profit. Citizens who work outside of the housing industry and take illegal actions to obtain or remain in possession of a house are referred to as fraud for housing schemes. Fraud for housing typically involves misrepresenting income and asset information or bribing industry professionals to modify a particular property’s details in their favor. If any information provided by the consumer, lender, or real estate agent is intentionally or accidentally omitted or untrue, then it is considered mortgage fraud.
Within those two subcategories of mortgage fraud are dozens of various schemes, including foreclosure rescue schemes, loan modification schemes, illegal property filings, equity skimming, property flipping, and home equity conversion mortgage. Mortgage fraud tends to be prevalent among industry professionals or those in vulnerable or volatile housing situations, as either victims or perpetrators. Unlike its mail fraud, wire fraud, and health care fraud counterparts, federal statutes do not specifically address or mandate specific standards and guidelines. However, the federal government can still take significant legal action to pursue mortgage fraud charges. When a perpetrator has criminal intent or uses other federally incriminating methods of communication and fraud (such as wire fraud and mail fraud), they can be tried through the federal court system and face significant legal ramifications. Like other forms of fraud, mortgage fraud is considered a Class C crime and has a statute of limitations of 10 years.
Generally, The F.B.I. is the agency to pursue mortgage fraud cases, alongside other applicable state officials and private organizations. The results of a mortgage fraud case can be as minor as a misdemeanor and as significant as a federal crime. After the economic crash of 2008 took such a toll on the housing industry, Congress passed the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act of 2009 to expand sentencing structures for mortgage fraud as well as increase investigative efforts. This legislation ruled that those convicted of mortgage fraud may receive sentences as severe as 30 years in prison and 1 million dollar fines. If you are facing mortgage fraud charges, understanding the lines between state and federal jurisdiction and the potential subsequent sentencing you will receive will mitigate the potential for disaster throughout the judicial process.