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Cincinnati Federal Crimes Blog

Can I appeal my drug crimes conviction?

Many Ohio residents convicted on criminal charges may not realize it, but it is possible certain errors took place while their criminal case was going through the legal system. When these errors do not have a substantial effect on the result at trial or affect the defendant's substantial rights, they are known as harmless errors. However, when the error was not harmless, it could become the grounds for an appeal to an appellate court.

An appeal on the ground of a plain error taking place is a ground for appeal. A plain error is an error that affects the defendant's substantial rights. It does not have to be brought up during the trial to be availed at a later time. However, it is also possible that an experienced attorney brought it to the court's attention by raising an objection. One common example of a plain error is a miscalculation of a sentence. It is also possible to have a verdict or ruling overturned on the basis of a plain error.

Hundreds of money laundering charges for father, daughter

It takes years for hardworking individuals to create a name for themselves in business circles and establish themselves as competitive and reputable businesses. All of the hard work though, can be lost in an instant if they face allegations and subsequent charges of wrongdoing, even before those allegations are proven in a court of law.

This may perhaps be the case for a father-daughter duo who have been indicted on 334 counts in Ohio recently. The 59-year-old father was a former internet technology director of a county auditor's office and the daughter was the owner and operator of a technology firm. According to authorities, the father was diverting money to his daughter through a number of bank transactions and invoices and the irregularities were brought to light by another employee in the auditor's office. According to authorities, the two are accused of illegally diverting around $1.8 million in about eight years.

What's the time limit for white collar criminal charges?

When one has been charged with committing a white collar crime, it is the prosecutor's job to prove every element of the case and rebut the defenses the accused puts forth. This also means it is their duty to ensure that the statute of limitations has not run on the case.

All non-capital cases in Ohio have a time limit within which the charges must be filed. After that time has elapsed, a person cannot be charged for doing a certain act. These limits exist so that potential defendants don't have to worry about the threat of charges indefinitely and that evidence and eyewitness testimony can remain infallible. The statute of limitations depends on the type of charges one is facing and if a combination of crimes were committed, the time might be extended.

Fighting charges of real estate fraud

Real estate is often a safe and familiar type of investment. The average person can dive into the world of purchasing property and learn along the way, unlike other types of investment that require some knowledge and understanding to be profitable. Even if you purchase Ohio real estate with the sole intention of owning a home, you will have lenders, realtors, appraisers and others to answer your questions and offer advice.

While it may be possible to go into real estate blindly, without a basic understanding of the mortgage process, you may be one of the many who end up in legal trouble by following questionable advice. In some cases, the guidance you receive may seem valuable if it saves you or even makes you money. However, you may end up in a mortgage fraud scheme that could cost you dearly.

Does one of these drug possession defenses apply to you?

Anytime you encounter police, it can be a disorienting and frightening experience. Whether it was during a traffic stop or some other event that led to you being arrested on suspicion of drug possession, you should take the situation seriously.

Even if you think the situation is dire, that does not mean you should simply accept that prosecutors would secure a conviction against you. Your situation may fit into one of several common drug possession defenses.

What must be shown to prove money-laundering?

When a prosecutor is charging an individual with committing a white-collar crime, they must prove all the elements of the crime were committed by the person being accused of it. Different crimes have different intent requirements that must be fulfilled and, if they are not, the crime cannot be proven. For example, a string of judgments in 2008 clarified the requirements of the federal crime of money laundering.

Money laundering is a financial crime. In an effort to hide the identity, source and destination of money that was obtained illegally, the financial transaction scheme that is concocted is referred to as money laundering. It involves an illegal activity through which the money reaches the suspect's hands, then the scheme of financial transactions the money goes through to hide the identity of the person who received the money and finally the return of the money in an indirect way into the suspect's hands.

Accused of embezzling money from your employer?

Taking something that doesn't belong to you is wrong. This is something most people are taught from a young age. Still, many people get involved in or find themselves accused of embezzling and then have to pay the consequences for it.

Embezzlement is a serious crime in Ohio. It tends to affect numerous individuals, not just your employer. Because this is the case, prosecuting attorneys will work diligently to see you pay fully for your alleged crime. To do this, it will be their job to prove that very specific elements exist in your case.

What is computer fraud?

Ohio residents, like their counterparts across the country, use their computers for practically every thing, from running their business to ordering their groceries. With so much information out there on the Internet and the use so rampant, it is inevitable that crimes related to computers also pop-up. But not all computer crimes are the same and when someone finds themselves facing white-collar criminal charges related to computer fraud, it is important to understand what the charges are so one can defend themselves accordingly.

Phishing is perhaps the most common form of computer fraud. It involves sending an email asking for someone's personal bank account information while misguiding him or her as to the use of the information. The email typically includes a link to a website where the alleged phisher asks for the relevant data.

Judges becoming harsher in dealing with white-collar crimes

White collar crimes have established a reputation of being victimless-though the victims lose a chunk of their live savings, the perpetrator does not come face to face with their victims as one would if accused of robbery or assault. Perpetrators know that there are harming the market, not specific identified victims. This is why the psychology of the crime is different-there is no signal to the brain that a crime is going to be committed. Rather, there is a gradual slipping over the line until one does not even realize what they have done.

Unfortunately though, white collar crimes are treated seriously by the legal system and gone are the days where judges would give light sentences to those Ohioans convicted of committing white collar crimes. Where in 1958 40 percent of those sentenced under fraud guidelines received some prison time for their crimes, the number had increased to approximately 70 percent in 2013, as per the U.S. Sentencing Commission's 2013 Report on Sentencing Trends. In fact, where the loss caused was at least $2.5 million, judges were handing out prison sentences of between five and 17 years in 2012. This demonstrates that judges are getting harsher, not lenient.

Criminal appeal may give you hope for the future

If you are convicted of criminal activity, such as a white-collar crime or a drug crime, you may not necessarily agree with the jury's verdict or with the judge's sentence. In this situation, filing an appeal is generally your only option.

The court system is currently clogged with appeals for vacating convictions and reducing sentences. For this reason, having an applied understanding of the law is critical for increasing your chances of winning your criminal appeal.  

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