Federal Charges and Money Laundering Lawyers in Houston, Tx
Money laundering is a federal crime that involves the concealment of illegally obtained money through illegal means, which can include transfers involving foreign banks or even local or national legitimate businesses.
At the Nava Law Group, P.C., our Houston, Texas money laundering defense attorneys focus on the facts of your case and how the specific money laundering laws apply to your circumstances, so your rights are protected while we build the best defense available for your unique needs.
Why Would Someone Participate in Money Laundering?
Laundering typically involves large amounts of money and has been designated as a federal crime since 1994, when the Money Laundering Suppression Act went into effect throughout the country.
When money is illegally obtained, individuals must go through great lengths to conceal its unlawful gain by redistributing it back into the financial system or marketplace where it can be used to purchase items like homes, cars, and other high-ticket items without arousing suspicion.
The most common types of illegally obtained money that must be redistributed for laundering — so it can be used as “clean” money — often originate from other crimes including, but not limited to:
- Black market sales of stolen goods
- Drug sales, manufacturing, and distribution
- Illegal gambling
- Insider trading
- Tax evasion
- Terrorism financing
Our United States Congress requires all banks to report financial transactions of $10,000 or more to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. This requirement triggers a red flag when anyone deposits or removes large sums of money, which often leads to an investigation that allows law enforcement officials to follow the money trail to ensure its legality.
What Are the Penalties for Money Laundering in Texas?
Federal money laundering laws exist under two statutes that apply to Texas residents and other offenders nationwide.
- Engaging in financial transactions that use ill-gotten funds to further a criminal activity
- Any person from engaging in a monetary transaction involving $10,000 where the money derives from specific unlawful activity
While money laundering penalties are unique to the person and circumstances of the charges, they are scaled by the amount of money involved, and include:
Laundered amount: $1,500 to $20,000
- 180 days to two years of jail time
- Fines up to $10,000
Laundered amount: $20,000 to $100,000
- Two to ten years of jail time
- $10,000 fine
Laundered amount: $100,000 to $200,000
- Two to 20 years of jail time
- $10,000 fine
Laundered amount: Over $200,000
- Five to 99 years of jail time
- $10,000 fine
Money laundering charges can be issued broadly, and the penalties that accompany those charges are serious and can include the government seizing any assets or property they can financially connect to a specified criminal activity.
Your livelihood can be jeopardized without notice if the government believes you are laundering money, and without an experienced Houston criminal defense attorney by your side, you could be facing more than financial liquidity, but the loss of your freedom as well.
Do not take your chances with the prosecutor’s office or speak to anyone about your charges before talking to your Houston money laundering defense attorney first. Anything you say can and will be used against you going forward. Allow our skilled money laundering lawyers in Texas to protect your rights from the beginning, so you can focus on getting your life back.
Our criminal defense lawyers in Houston Also Focus on The Following Practice Areas:
How Does the Nava Law Group, P.C. Defend Texas Money Laundering Charges?
Money laundering is a complex area of law, which requires an experienced Houston money laundering attorney to create a strategic defense that will allow you to face the charges with confidence.
That requires our law firm to build a strong case by establishing what evidence the government has against you, and the financial documents that back up their findings.
We will review your case by tracing your financial history, interviewing witnesses, and determining what evidence is admissible and what we can have excluded.
The government must prove the:
- Money was derived from a specific criminal activity under federal law
- Monetary or financial transaction occurred
- Person being charged was aware that the money had been obtained from criminal activity
If you accepted money without knowing it was obtained through criminal activity, you cannot be guilty of money laundering.
Likewise, if the money was not received through a specific criminal act — outlined in the money laundering statutes — regardless of how you obtained the money or what you did with it, there can be no money laundering conviction.
At the Nava Law Group, P.C., our money laundering lawyers in Houston will work tirelessly to build the best defense available for your unique criminal charges by customizing your legal representation to produce real results.
Contact the Nava Law Group, P.C. Money Laundering Attorneys in Houston Texas Today
If you are currently under investigation for money laundering, have been questioned by federal prosecutors, or have already been charged with money laundering, contact our experienced federal crimes attorneys in Houston and Harris County today by calling (713) 218-2400 to learn how we can protect your rights while designing the best defense available for your case.