When any persons acquire monetary funds illegally or use schemes to make the funds seem as though they were acquired legally, then the action would be considered money laundering under Florida Law. Although money laundering is a federal offense it is also a violation of Florida’s laws. The penalties for money laundering are severe and the crime can be prosecuted on the state and federal level. The process of money laundering requires a multitude of layered financial transactions and transfers which ultimately conceals the origins of how the money was obtained. Any activity done throughout the money laundering process can result in criminal implications. For instance, placing the funds into a business or making purchases, can result in criminal charges.
If you are facing charges for money laundering, having a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side is vital to protect your future.
Were you arrested or you think that you could possibly be under investigation for committing money laundering? If you are, it’s crucial you have a highly qualified and experienced legal representation. John Terrezza of [firm] is a criminal defense attorney in Pensacola who can assist you. He represents clients in Milton, Pensacola Beach, Gulf Breeze, and throughout Escambia County and Santa Rosa County.
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If you are facing charges for money laundering, there can be additional crimes associated with the offenses that you could be charged with. Some of these include money Laundering, mail/wire fraud, and embezzlement which are non-violent offenses that fall under white-collar crime. The white-collar offense of money laundering can be prosecuted in the state and federal level depending on what laws were violated.
In order to stop the act of money laundering, many state and federal laws have been placed. Financial institutions have procedures in place to help stop the unlawful activity of money laundering. For instance, banks require income verification when depositing a large sum. If a suspicious financial transaction is taking place, then the bank is required to report it.
Florida’s Money Laundering Act
Under Florida’s Money Laundering Act (Florida Statutes §896.101), money laundering is the act of a financial transaction or series of transactions that is used to conceal, hide, or disguise, the process of money and unlawful activity to obtain it. The state law made the act illegal and became effective in 2015. The legislation goes on to explain that the crime is committed when any persons knows that the property acquired is from the proceeds of some unlawful activity. Therefore, the person doesn’t have to know where the money came from or the type of illegal activity that was involved.
Florida Control of Money Laundering
Under the Money Transmitter Code, only a person who is located in or doing business in Florida can act as a fund’s transmitter. The Florida Control of Money Laundering is a section under the Money Transmitter code meant to deteriorate the activity of money laundering by individuals who are unlicensed money transmitter (See Fl. Stat. § 560.123). It is a third-degree felony when individual acts as a vendor of a money transmitter when they are not lawfully allowed to do so. A Money Transmitter must also have a registered license under state law. When an individual acts as a vendor for an unlicensed money transmitter, then he or she is liable and could face associated charges (See Fl. Stat. § 560.125(2)).
The penalties for money laundering depend on the amount of money processed and the severity of the charges against the defendant. In other words, if the defendant has a prior history of committing the offense, it can implicate his or her penalty if charged with the crime. It is vital to have legal representation because aside from having to pay a hefty fine, the defendant may have to serve time. Florida’s Money Laundering Act (Fl. Stat. §896.101) provides the following penalties and classifications:
There are various transactions that can fall under money laundering. For instance, an individual conducting the activities of purchasing, sales, bank deposits, wire transfers, currency exchanges, and/or investment can qualify as transactions meant to hide or disguise the origins of the funds. Furthermore, the act of transferring the title of a property is also an act of money laundering. For example, if an individual transfers the title of his or her vehicles, then it can be considered an act of money laundering because he or she is converting cash into real estate property while attempting to hide the trail of the illegal funds.
There are many activities or schemes that can be viewed as money laundering, below are some:
Money Laundering | Federal Offense – Visit the link to view the federal law for money launder. Under 18 U.S Code §1956 money laundering is considered a federal offense when the individual is conducting or attempts to conduct a financial transaction knowing that the funds were obtained through illegal activity.
Florida Bar Journal – Follow the link to the Florida Bar, the website provides resources such as notices about proposed amendments, legal information, and much more. The Florida Bar is an organization of lawyers’ licenses by the Supreme Court of Florida to practice law in the state. Also, the website provides information on Florida’s anti-money laundering statutes including but not limited to Florida’s Control of Money Laundering in Financial Institution Act, the Florida RICO Act, etc.
If you believe that you may be under investigation for money laundering, the first step in making sure that you have a strong defense is retaining legal representation. John Terrezza is a criminal defense attorney in Pensacola who handles all stages of cases involving white-collar offenses and fraud crimes. Do not make any kind of statement to investigators or authorities without legal representation.
John Terrezza has worked in Florida criminal law for years. He is skillful and will use every possible resource to try to get the best possible result for your case. Get in contact with him at [phone] to set up your confidential consultation. [firm] has represented clients throughout the greater Santa Rosa County and Escambia County area such as Navarre, Gulf Breeze, Pensacola, and Milton.