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Articles Posted in Conspiracy

Four former South Florida casino employees and their wives have been convicted of stealing $5.2 million from the business over several years.

The U.S. The Attorney’s Office in Miami announced Tuesday that four men have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal funds in excess of $1,000 from Miccosukee Gaming, conspiracy to commit computer fraud and money laundering conspiracy. Their respective wives have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering offenses. All eight await sentencing.

According to federal court documents, the men worked in the casino’s video game department. From January 2011 to May 2015, they tampered with computers in electronic gaming machines, causing those machines to generate false and fraudulent credit vouchers or tickets. They then enlisted others to exchange the vouchers for cash at the casino. The money was turned over to the employees’ wives, who moved the cash between multiple bank accounts.

The couples used the stolen funds to buy homes, investment properties, vehicles, boats, vacations and Florida Prepaid College Plans for their children.

Conspiracy charges can arise in any scenario where two or more people allegedly planned to commit a crime. Many conspiracy cases involve complex issues and the question of the responsibility of each individual involved.

Money laundering charges can arise in any case where allegedly illegally obtained money changes hands. This offense can also be charged when illegally obtained money is deposited in the bank.

Typically, money laundering charges are brought as conspiracies to commit the crime on multiple occasions. With that said, you can be charged with a new count of money laundering for each transaction knowingly conducted with these illegally obtained funds. What does this mean? If you engaged in one banking transaction per day for one month, you could be charged with as many as 30 counts of money laundering.

Money laundering is often linked to other charges. For this specific case, the men are charged with conspiracy to steal funds in excess of $1,000 and conspiracy to commit computer fraud. Authorities tacked on the money laundering conspiracy charge. 

Money laundering may be charged as a federal or Florida State offense, each of which carry harsh penalties. Due to the fact that money laundering is a complex crime, investigations are typically conducted by those with forensic accounting and tax backgrounds such as the IRS, Secret Service and FBI. You will need an experienced South Florida Money Laundering Defense Attorney at Whittel & Melton to defend you.

Even though it is not classified as a violent crime, money laundering is one of the most serious charges you can ever face. Every count of conspiracy to commit or money laundering that may be charged can lead to years of imprisonment, substantial fines and asset forfeiture. Penalties at the state and federal level are both substantial.

In order to prosecute an individual of money laundering, the court must prove that the person charged with money laundering illegally obtained the funds in question and deliberately concealed their origins. Without these two critical pieces of evidence, money laundering charges must be dismissed. Our South Florida White Collar Crimes Attorneys at Whittel & Melton understand that these types of charges can be fabricated or displayed in the wrong light. Our attorneys will work with you and help tell your side of the story. We can be your trusted advocates throughout this experience.

We will carefully investigate the circumstances surrounding your charges to formulate a tailored defense strategy for you. As former prosecutors, we have extensive experience in both state and federal courts, so we know how to protect our clients. We work to anticipate and address the prosecution’s arguments and fight to get the best results possible.

Many of our clients charged with money laundering are first-time offenders and have never encountered the legal system previously. We will work with you to make sure you understand charges, possible defense strategies and each phase of the trial so that you have the information you need to make key decisions for your future. Our goal is to fight to get you the best possible outcome for your particular situation.

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A former Miami police officer has been sentenced to 15 ½ years in prison for her apparent involvement in a drug trafficking conspiracy.

Court records show that the woman was sentenced Wednesday in Miami federal court. She previously pleaded guilty to conspiring with other officers to possess cocaine.

Investigators say the woman provided police protection for what she believed were large shipments of cocaine on three occasions last September and October. She received a cash payment of $17,000. The deliveries were arranged by undercover FBI agents.

Cases are still pending against two other former Miami officers.

Drug trafficking charges can lead to serious consequences if convicted. Not only are you looking at a permanent criminal record, but you can also face serious prison time and hefty fines.

Our South Florida Drug Crimes Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton have helped many clients accused of federal drug charges minimize or eliminate penalties. As former prosecutors, our team of trial lawyers understand what it takes to prepare an effective defense. We use our inside knowledge to anticipate the prosecution’s case and formulate aggressive defense strategies for drug trafficking conspiracy charges. We can also negotiate with prosecutors to reach deals or secure reduced penalties.

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Two women have been arrested after Palm Beach County deputies charged them in a string of burglaries across four counties.

Palm Beach deputies arrested the two women, both 21, for allegedly burglarizing different business and stealing cars.

According to the affidavit, the string of burglaries began in July 2016 and included crimes in Brevard, Martin, St. Lucie, Palm Beach and Broward counties. Some of the targets included restaurants, computer stores and jewelry stores.

Deputies say that the two women used a pickax to commit the burglaries.

Warrants for the two women were issued in September last year.

Deputies charged both women with racketeering and conspiracy to commit racketeering. Their arraignment is set for Thursday.

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act was enacted in 1970 to allow federal prosecutors to pursue and charge those involved in organized criminal activity. In Florida, racketeering is aggressively prosecuted and a conviction can lead to severe penalties, such as years behind bars, hefty fines and even asset forfeiture.

Racketeering charges are often brought after a long investigation, and a RICO defense is usually complex. Only an experienced, You need a trial lawyer who has the experience and skill needed to prevent a conviction. Our South Florida Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are well-versed in defending those facing racketeering charges. As former prosecutors, we know how the State will prepare and prosecute its case.

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A former Colombian anti-corruption official is facing prison time after pleading guilty to U.S. money-laundering conspiracy charges as part of a bribery scheme.

A sentencing hearing is scheduled Thursday in Miami federal court for the former director of the anti-corruption office for Colombia’s chief prosecutor.

The man faces up to 20 years in prison.

The Drug Enforcement Administration says in court documents that the man sought to obtain thousands of dollars in bribes from a former governor of Colombia’s Cordoba region who was under a separate corruption investigation.

Bribery is defined as the act of offering money in order to influence the actions of another. The crime of bribery usually arises in the case of public officials, where a private citizen may offer something of value as a means to influence how the public official carries out their public duties. Most bribery cases are charged as conspiracies. In a conspiracy, the government believes that two or more people agreed to engage in criminal conduct.  

With extremely harsh penalties on the line, anyone facing accusations of bribery needs a powerful federal criminal defense attorney on their side to protect their interests, their livelihood, and, most importantly, their freedom.

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A former University of Florida football player was sentenced to nearly 22 years in prison and ordered to pay about $18 million for a healthcare fraud conspiracy that stripped millions from the TRICARE program for military members, veterans and their families, according to federal court records.

The 46-year-old man, who played for Steve Spurrier’s Gators from 1990-93, was accused in a 49-count indictment of hiring an independent marketing team that included former Florida and NFL quarterback Shane Matthews in a conspiracy to fleece the TRICARE program.

The man maintained his innocence and denied what the prosecuting attorney described as “buying and selling patients for a pharmacy.”

The man, a former defensive back who spent three years in the NFL with the Chiefs and Jaguars, was accused of receiving and paying kickbacks to score lucrative patient referrals for a major South Florida pharmacy.

Despite his claims of innocence, a jury unanimously convicted him on multiple charges earlier this year, including the conspiracy that funneled more than $20 million from the TRICARE program.

Prosecutors described the conspiracy as a “pyramid scheme” and said there are other “unindicted co-conspirators.”

Healthcare fraud is a crime that is often charged along with conspiracy. Fraud is defined as an attempt to gain money or value by a false representation of fact. If you are facing federal conspiracy and/or fraud charges, or if you have reason to believe you are under investigation for such charges, you need to act fast and consult a Federal Healthcare Fraud Attorney at Whittel & Melton. A free consultation with us can help you learn more about the criminal defense process and the best course of action for your case.

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