OC Money Laundering Defense Lawyers
What is Money Laundering? California Penal Code Section 186.10 PC
As the name implies, money laundering is when you knowingly take "dirty" money (money earned through illegal activity) and attempt to make it "clean" money (money that is earned legally). For example, if you take money that was made through the sale of illegal narcotics or stolen cars and deposit that cash into your bank account, you can be charged with money laundering.
In California, money laundering is covered under two main statutes called Penal Code 186.10 PC and Health & Safety Code 11370.9 HS. This is the difference between them:
- Penal Code 186.10 PC covers money that is related to any criminal activity
- Health & Safety Code 11370.9 HS only covers money that is related to drug crimes
Money laundering is a called a "wobbler" crime one that can be prosecuted as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Due to the complex laws regarding money laundering, it is highly important to contact a knowledgeable defense attorney should you face such charges. The seasoned professionals at the Law Office of Michael L. Guisti have successfully represented many clients charged with money laundering in Southern California. They can be reached at (714) 530-9690.
How Much Money Has to be Involved to be Charged with Money Laundering?
- Any transaction (deposit, withdrawal, transfer of funds, or writing a check) or group of transactions involving a minimum of $5,000 over a seven day period or $25,000 over a 30 day period can bring up a money laundering charge.
How Can the Prosecution Prove Money Laundering?
If you are charged with money laundering, the State will have to prove that you:
- Tried to conduct a transaction through a financial institution, such as a bank.
- That the above mentioned minimum amounts of money were involved.
- That you engaged in this transaction with the intent to promote criminal activity or knew that the money was generated by illegal activity.
How Can the Prosecution Prove Health & Safety Code 11370.9 HS was Violated?
The State would have to prove that:
- The money was obtained in connection with illegal drugs (selling, manufacturing, transporting, etc.).
- You conducted the transaction to conceal the source of the money.
- The amount of money was more than $25,000 within a 30 day period.
What are the Penalties for Money Laundering in OC?
If you are convicted of Penal Code 186.10 PC, the penalties can be severe. As a felony, it can land you in jail or state prison for up to three years. If convicted of violating Health & Safety Code 11370.9 HS, you could face up to four years in state prison.
Remember, being prosecuted doesn't always lead to a conviction.
The tenacious attorneys at Law Office of Michael L. Guisti have successfully employed many defenses when representing our clients in money laundering cases. For instance, you didn't know the source of the money was from criminal activity, like if a friend or spouse gave you the money from a drug deal and you deposited it in your account without knowing. The police could have discovered the transaction by looking at your bank records without a warrant. An experienced OC white collar crime attorney will know how to fight for you.
If you are charged with Money Laundering in Orange County, the first thing you should do is contact Law Office of Michael L. Guisti for a free consultation. Call (714) 530-9690 today.
Whether you're facing a felony or a misdemeanor, don't risk a conviction. Act quickly to redeem your reputation and protect your record by consulting with our Orange County criminal defense lawyer. Call today to schedule your free consultation.