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No Slowdowns As FBI Turns Up the Heat on Alleged White Collar Offenders

You don’t have to be an expert to notice the increased attention being focused on white collar criminal activity these days in America. From the financial scandals of the mid-2000s all the way up to the anti-Wall Street sentiment that has permeated the early months of 2012 the public is increasingly intolerant of what they see as unscrupulous business practices.

This almost irrational aversion to all things corporate has even leaked into the governmental sphere – law enforcement authorities are eager to do their part to appease the loudest dissenters in the civic arena. All too often, aggressive enforcement means professionals who never would have been accused of a crime in a less politically charged climatic must now turn to a white collar crime attorney to defend themselves against serious accusations.

Thousands of Convictions and Billions in Restitution Stem From Stepped Up Enforcement Efforts

Recently, the FBI released numbers on its white collar criminal enforcement efforts in 2011. In total, the FBI’s probes of financial crimes last year netted more than 3,000 convictions and some $12 billion in court-ordered restitution. High dollar insider trading, Ponzi schemes and health care fraud were areas of particular focus.

If those figures sound high, that’s because they are: the number of FBI probes for certain categories of white collar crimes has risen steeply in recent years. For instance, the total number of securities fraud and commodities fraud investigations grew by 52 percent from 2008 to 2011.

With the FBI adding more resources to its white collar enforcement division, the trend toward more financial crime investigations shows no signs of slowing down. FBI Assistant Director Kevin Perkins recently announced that the agency has hired 250 forensic accountants to pore over financial records for criminal activity; the FBI has also implemented a financial intelligence center that identifies where it needs to send field agents to counter emerging financial crime threats.

Protect Yourself From Overenthusiastic Investigators

As anyone in business knows, regulations are not always clear-cut. Even stepping close to the line of legality could bring unwanted attention from the FBI.

If you are being scrutinized for an alleged white collar violation, you have rights. Protect yourself from wrongfully being swept up in the new wave of zealous financial crime enforcement and contact a white collar crime attorney today.

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