Los Angeles Racketeering Defense Attorneys
Racketeering is a federal offense, and the United States government can come down very harshly on those found guilty of this crime. If convicted, you will likely face decades in prison and must contend with a hefty fine that will be difficult to pay after all of your assets are seized or frozen. However, with a strong defense, you may be able to significantly decrease your penalties or even be declared not guilty.
Our legal team at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP has years of experience defending clients in Los Angeles County for any number of criminal allegations. Not many other firms will be able to bring as much passion and knowledge to the table. If you or a loved one are on trial for racketeering and other related charges, contact a Los Angeles racketeering defense attorney at (213) 688-0460. Don’t delay, because the prosecution has already started to build their case.
Racketeering sounds like a crime from a bygone era. But it is still prevalent today, and Los Angeles courts may very well charge you with racketeering. The term racketeering refers to when an organized group runs an illegal business in order to make a profit or when a crime ring embezzles money through a legitimate group or organization.
Many kinds of racketeering exist, and many ways to be accused of the crime according to the Racketeer Influenced and Corruptions Act (RICO). The RICO Act lists out 37 possible racketeering crimes, as well as the punishments that those who carry out those crimes should face. Some of the more common ones we have seen include:
Whatever the facts of your case may be, the punishments for racketeering can be incredibly harsh, and leave your life in unstable and uncertain circumstances.
Racketeering is viewed as a very serious crime, both at a state and federal level, and is usually punished according to the RICO Act. Before you are even given your sentence, you will likely be required to give up all goods and profits that came as a result of the scheme. This can, and often does, include things like your house, your car, and any other possessions that were purchased through illegal means.
However, giving these funds and items up willingly does not mean you will not also be required to face further punishments after your conviction. You may end up facing:
- Up to 20 years in a federal prison; and/or
- A fine of $25,000 per RICO violation.
Although the RICO Act sets a 20-year maximum sentence for racketeering offenses, this can be extended according to the additional crimes that racketeering charges often involve. For example, under the RICO Act, a prostitution ring is considered a racketeering offense. However, prostitution rings will usually also involve additional crimes such as assault, pimping, and kidnapping. Each of those crimes will carry their own sentence that will be added on to the overall punishment.
The RICO Act was originally enacted by Congress to attempt to break up the mob and hold crime syndicates responsible. At the time, the mob had a strong foothold in the county, and Congress wanted to make it possible to finally convict them. It was an incredibly successful law and did exactly what Congress intended. Now, it is more commonly used against corrupt police and politicians, as well as businessmen who use their companies as fronts to embezzle money.
However, in order to use the Rico Act, the prosecution must prove that:
- You are the owner or manager of an organization
- The organization in question violated at least two kinds of racketeering per the RICO Act
- These two violations happened over the course of a 10-year period
To prove that you committed two violations of the RICO Act, a great deal of evidence must be used. Generally speaking, racketeering trials are incredibly comprehensive, with the prosecution having to present countless pieces of evidence and conduct an exhaustive investigation. In order to defend against a racketeering charge, your attorney may implement arguments such as:
Lacking evidence: Racketeering charges, as we said, requires extensive evidence. If the prosecution does not do their due diligence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty, then the defense can argue that there is not enough evidence to convict you.
Innocence: One of the best, and most common, defenses is that you simply didn’t commit the crimes you are being charged with. With cases like racketeering, there is often a paper trail that can demonstrate your innocence.
Evidence was obtained illegally: During racketeering cases, your property will often be seized by the government and may be used as evidence against you. However, if the evidence used by the prosecution was actually obtained through illegal means, it cannot be used in court and your case may be thrown out altogether.
Finding the right defense for your case will require expertise and attention to detail. Any small piece of evidence could the linchpin that wins you your freedom. We at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP have years of experience under our belt and know our way around the courtroom and an investigation. If you need a strong defense against a racketeering charge, call our firm at (213) 688-0460 to secure the representation of a Los Angeles white-collar criminal defense attorney. You need the very best legal defense you can get.
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.