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Westfield NJ Criminal Defense Law Blog

Utah Combating Affinity Fraud with White Crime Registry for Financial Crimes

Utah introduces first white collar criminal registry

Utah_White_Collar_Crime_Offender_Registry___Home___Registry.pngIn March of 2016, Utah became the first state in the country to introduce a White Collar Criminal Registry. While criminal registries are not new, for example sex offender registries have been around for over 20 years, this is the first time a state has established a public registry for white-collar offenders. This registry is now added to a growing list of registries that include arson, domestic violence, drug offenses and even an animal abuse registry in Tennessee.

International Con and Money Laundering: The Ironies

china-money-laundering-fake-ceo-scam.pngOver the past several years, there has been increasing concern over the threat of international money laundering operations that allow criminals to move billions of dollars illegally overseas and out of the reach of their victims. Gilbert Chikli is one of the most notorious financial con men to date, godfather of the 'Fake CEO' scam that allowed him to steal more than 8 million Euros from many of the largest corporations in the world. Despite being convicted of fraud among other things, and sentenced to seven years in a French prison, Chikli is still living freely in Israel today. 

Criminal Convictions Can Have Serious Immigration Outcomes

If you are a non-citizen facing criminal charges, you face more than just the loss of your liberty. Criminal convictions can have serious immigration consequences. The outcome of a criminal case may affect a non-citizen's ability to remain in the United States, to become a citizen, or to re-enter after leaving to travel or visit family. Certain criminal convictions and/or terms of imprisonment make non-citizen criminal defendants, even those with legal permanent resident status, subject to mandatory detention and removal (deportation).

Seemingly innocent activities may be treated as Internet crimes

Internet crimes were relatively rare several years ago. However, now Internet crimes can be committed from the convenience of a person's home and can happen at the international or interstate levels. Even activities that seem innocent in New Jersey may bring serious penalties from various jurisdictions, including multiple states along with the federal government.

If you have been charged with an Internet crime, it is wise to seek legal advice whether you are an individual or a business. Our attorneys can represent not just individuals but also businesses of all sizes. These include from small shops to Fortune 100 companies.

NJ State Police Crime Lab Chemist's False Drug Test Jeopardizes Nearly 10,000 Criminal Drug Convictions

false-drug-tests.pngOn April 25, 2016, in the wake of startling revelations that a laboratory technician at the New Jersey State Police Laboratory in Little Falls had been falsifying test results, the Supreme Court of New Jersey issued an order centralizing the litigation of all post-conviction challenges in the State before a single judge.  The order appointed Bergen County Superior Court Judge Edward A. Jerejian to handle all post-conviction litigation in which Kamalkant Shah, the laboratory technician found to have faked results, was either the primary laboratory examiner, conducted peer review, or conducted administrative review of purported drug evidence.  Pending cases predicated upon Shah's laboratory work are to remain with the judges presently assigned under the order.

Defending Mortgage Fraud Criminal Charges

mortgage-fraud-financial-crisis-2008.pngGoldman Sachs (NYSE: GE) recently agreed to a $5.6 billion dollar settlement for its role in bundling subprime mortgages for sale to investors without disclosing that the mortgages had an unusually high percentage of credit and compliance issues.  In doing so, it joins a number of other high profile banks who have admitted wrongdoing with regard to their roles in the mortgage frenzy that led up to the financial crisis in 2008. 

Steps in a Criminal Case

Stages of a Criminal CaseThe stages of a criminal case as it proceeds through the legal system can be confusing for individuals who find themselves on the wrong end of legal charges for the first time. Though popular media has no shortage of stories set within the criminal justice system, these fictional depictions often leave out important details. When a substantial portion of your personal and professional future hangs in the balance, it's critical to have a complete and accurate understanding of the steps through which your criminal case will proceed.

Most Common Federal Business Frauds

Federal-Business-Frauds.pngViolations of any number of federal statutes have the potential to jeopardize a business and can, in many cases, result in individuals going to prison. In addition, restitution and forfeiture may be applicable. Below, we delve into some of the most commonly encountered federal business fraud statutes.

Communicating Miranda Rights to Non-native English Speakers

Our firm represented Dias Kadyrbayev, the young college student charged with obstruction of justice in the Boston Marathon bombing case. The Government sought to introduce statements Kadyrbayev made to law enforcement after allegedly being Mirandized.  In the motion to suppress and evidentiary hearing, attorneys Robert G. Stahl and Laura K. Gasiorowski argued that as a non-native speaker of English with no prior experience with the American justice system, Dias did not comprehend his rights under Miranda.  Those rights were provided to Kadrybayev only in English, with no Kazakh or Russian translation or interpreter, despite the fact that his limited English proficiency was insufficient to understand the complicated language and syntax of the Miranda rights.  

How can the government seize my property without charging me?

There have been stories in the news recently about how the government – at both the New Jersey and federal levels – has been using asset forfeiture as a means of funding law enforcement activities. While this may not come as a surprise in cases where criminal defendants have been convicted of crimes and the assets seized represented their ill-gotten gains, the reality is that sometimes people are having their property taken away from them without a warrant requirement or even being charged with anything.

At the federal level, the government can seize property using a variety of means. It can do so administratively; it can do so through the criminal justice system; and it can do so in civil court actions. Civil asset forfeitures can be particularly pernicious, with more than $4 billion of property assets seized nationally in one year alone, and more than $2 billion in cash being seized from individuals who were never charged with a crime.