Los Angeles Investment Fraud Defense Lawyers
Investment fraud is a criminal act in which it is alleged that deceptive practices, such as false or misleading information, was presented to an investor. If accused of this offense, the risks to your professional standing, reputation, license, and freedom are all at risk. If you are under investigation or have been accused of investment fraud, it is imperative that you are represented by a law firm with extensive experience defending people accused of committing serious financial crimes.
At Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP, our Los Angeles criminal defense attorneys frequently take on high-profile cases. Our legal team has earned a reputation for excellence defending white collar crimes, including investment fraud cases. If you are currently under investigation or have been charged with investment fraud, contact us for a free initial consultation. Call (213) 688-0460 to discuss your case.
Investment fraud is a broad term that covers several types of fraudulent activities, the most common of which pertain to stock manipulation or insider trading. Since these crimes are governed by laws at both the state and federal levels, the penalties for a conviction can be life changing, including fines, loss of a professional license, and time spent in federal prison.
Here is a more in-depth look at different types of investment fraud:
- Ponzi Schemes: In a Ponzi scheme, early investors are paid with contributions made by new investors to make the scam seem legitimate. Eventually, the scheme will dissolve when the organizer decides to cash out and take all the money made by investors. Ponzi schemes are typically charged as felonies.
- Insider Trading: When insiders misappropriate information from their employer and use it to trade stocks at an advantage that is not available to the public, this is considered insider trading. You could also be charged with this crime if you provide a tip to someone else that violates U.S. securities laws.
- Stock Manipulation: If you cause a stock’s price to rise or fall through some form of manipulation, such as spreading false information, rigging trades, or partaking in transactions to make a security seem more actively traded, it is considered stock manipulation. Penny stocks are typically more prone to this.
- False or Misleading Statements: When an advisor or stock broker makes misleading or false statements that lead a client to make an investment decision they might not have otherwise made with accurate information, they may face criminal charges.
The consequences of a conviction for investment fraud will vary, depending on the specific details in the case. Penalties often include both imprisonment and substantial fines. If you violate certain federal laws, you may serve as much as 25 years in prison and be ordered to pay a fine as high as millions of dollars.
Investment fraud crimes typically filed in federal court, although you may also be facing charges in state court. If it is alleged that you intentionally convinced an investor to buy or sell a security based on false information or had access to or shared insider information when buying or selling securities, the consequences can be severe, typically including incarceration.
There are two sections of 18 U.S.C. § 1348 that criminalize certain categories of behavior connected to investment fraud. First, this law criminalizes the defrauding of anyone in a commodities transaction, securities transaction, or an options transaction. Second, it also criminalizes the attainment of any money through false pretenses, misrepresentations, or false promises associated with any securities transaction.
Investment fraud crimes are heavily punished. The case will be managed by an aggressive prosecution team. The prosecution has the burden of proof, and must present evidence that the accused either intentionally or recklessly omitted information or provided false information that an investor relied on to make an investment. To defend against the charges, our Los Angeles criminal defense attorney will perform a comprehensive investigation into the facts to craft a defense. If you are under investigation by the SEC, it is imperative that you are protected by an attorney before speaking to any investigator about what occurred.
Let the white collar criminal defense attorneys at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP fight on your behalf and advise you throughout this process. Your future freedom, reputation, and financial health is at stake, and our legal team has the experience and resources to plan and present your defense, professionally and with confidence. Call us today at (213) 688-0460 to schedule a free consultation and discuss the details of the case as early as possible.
Recent Case Results
- Complete Dismissal of Molestation Charges
Attorney Mark Werksman’s 29 year old client was falsely accused of molesting two neighborhood children and was subsequently charged with felony child molestation, with a significant prison sentence hanging over his head should he be convicted. Instead, at the preliminary hearing Werksman was able to convince the court to grant his client a complete dismissal of any charges.
- Decision Set Aside
Client, a college student in a faulty Title IX case, was awarded $130,000 in attorney fees.
- Probation with No Jail Time for Drug Money Laundering Charge
Wilmington man accused in New York federal court of laundering drug money through the sale of laptop computers. Mark was able to get the case transferred to federal court in Los Angeles, where he convinced the United States Attorney to reduce the charges. His client was sentenced to probation with no jail time on a misdemeanor conviction.