Money Laundering Defense Attorneys Passaic County NJ
Money laundering is basically the act of taking illegally derived money and utilizing it in a manner so as to create the appearance that it was earned through a legitimate business operation. Examples of enterprises where money laundering charges typically come into play are those involving distribution of drugs, gambling, selling firearms and promoting prostitution. It should be emphasized, however, that there is virtually no end to the list of illegal activities that could give rise to money laundering charges. What is more pivotal, assuming you were arrested on this offense, is that you understand the seriousness of the situation. Money laundering has the potential for result in up to twenty (20) years in prison.
If you or a loved one is in jeopardy of being convicted of money laundering under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25, you need to insure that the best approach is taken to dismiss and/or minimize the penalties presently hanging over your head. The attorneys at our firm, the Law Offices of Marshall, Bonus, Proetta & Oliver have the experience and skill to help you. A lawyer is available 24/7 to assist you at 862-203-4070. Give us a call. Our team of extensive experience in all courts located in Passaic County including Totowa, Ringwood, Clifton, Hawthorne, Little Falls and Haledon.
What is Money Laundering?
While many people are familiar with the term, very few actually understand what constitutes money laundering. To convict someone in accordance with N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25, the State must prove, beyond reasonable doubt, that the accused did one of the following:
a. Transported or possessed property known or which a reasonable person would believe to be derived from criminal activity; or
b. Engaged in a transaction involving property known or which a reasonable person would believe to be derived from criminal activity and did so with: (i) intent to facilitate or promote the criminal activity; (ii) knowledge that the transaction was designed in whole or in part to conceal or disguise the nature, location, source, ownership or control of the property derived from criminal activity; or (iii) to avoid a transaction reporting requirement under the laws of this State or any other state or of the United States; or
c. Directs, organizes, finances, plans, manages, supervises, or controls the transportation of or transactions in property known or which a reasonable person would believe to be derived from criminal activity.
Degree of a Money Laundering Offense
A charge of money laundering can be a crime of the first degree, second degree or third degree. While each of these is an indictable offenses, the term in NJ to describe a felony, the seriousness of the penalties that apply hinges on the amount of money involved in the “money laundering”. If the value of the property involved is $500,000 or more, then it is first degree money laundering. It is second degree money laundering if the property has a value of at least $75,000 but less than $500,000. Where the money or property involved is less than $75,000, third degree money laundering may be charged.
Penalties for Money Laundering
As previously stated, the severity of the penalties for money laundering depend on whether the conviction is for a first, second or third degree crime. If convicted of money laundering in the first degree, a defendant will serve up to twenty (20) years of prison with a minimum term of parole ineligibility between one-third (1/3) and one (1/2) of the sentence imposed. The court, at the request of the Passaic County Prosecutor, may also impose a $500,000 Anti-Money Laundering Penalty.
If convicted of money laundering in the second degree, the defendant will serve up to ten (10) years of jail. A $250,000 anti-money laundering penalty may also be imposed.
If convicted of money laundering in the third degree, the defendant may serve up to five (5) years of imprisonment. The anti-money laundering penalty is $75,000.
A criminal penalty may also be imposed for each grade of this offense in an amount equal to three (3) times the value of the property or money involved in the money laundering.