If you’re being investigated for racketeering, it’s essential that you retain the services of the experienced Columbus racketeering attorneys with Luftman, Heck, and Associates today at (614) 500-3836 to find out about your rights throughout the criminal justice process. Our Ohio lawyers are very knowledgeable about the state and federal laws that apply to organized crime.
Federal and state authorities spare no expense in investigating and prosecuting people engaged in organized crime. Unfortunately, overzealous investigators and prosecutors sometimes cast too wide a net and ensnare innocent parties into costly and unpleasant confrontations with the criminal justice system.
When an organization has committed racketeering, it’s very difficult to determine which members were in on the racket. Many innocent managers, and even their unwitting subordinates, may face criminal charges for the actions of a few bad apples within their organization.
Racketeering Charges in Ohio
Ohio Revised Code section 2923.32 describes racketeering as engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. Specifically, the section prohibits:
- Employees or associates of an enterprise from conducting or even indirectly participating in a pattern of corrupt activity or the collection of unlawful debt
- Acquiring or maintaining control or an interest in an enterprise through a pattern of corrupt activity or the collection of unlawful debt
- Acquiring a title, right or interest in real property from proceeds knowingly derived from a pattern of corrupt activity or the collection of unlawful debts
Under Ohio law, a “pattern of corrupt activity” exists whenever there’s evidence of two or more distinct instances of corrupt activity that are related to the same enterprise. An “enterprise” is any individual or organization associated for legal or illegal business purposes.
Federal Racketeering Charges
Most racketeering investigations and prosecutions are performed by federal government agencies that seek to break up criminal empires. They are authorized by the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, or RICO, to work across multiple jurisdictions.
According to 18 USC 1961, you may be charged with racketeering if you’re a member of an organization and have committed two or more of the following offenses within a ten-year window:
- Gambling, murder, robbery, kidnapping, arson, bribery, extortion, dealing in obscene material, or drug trafficking as defined by state law
- Bribery, counterfeiting, embezzlement, theft, fraud, dealing in obscene materials, slavery, obstruction of justice, racketeering, gambling, money laundering, commission of murder-for-hire, as defined within the Federal criminal code
- Embezzlement of union funds
- Bankruptcy or securities fraud
- Criminal copyright infringement
- Money laundering
- Enabling or helping aliens to enter the country illegally for financial gain
- Terrorist acts
Consequences of Racketeering
Like any other criminal charge, the prosecutor must prove you’re guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If you are convicted of racketeering, you may face the following penalties under state and federal laws:
- Incarceration for up to 20 years
- A fine of $25,000 or equivalent to three times the gains earned or the financial loss caused by the corrupt activity
- Costs associated with the investigation and prosecution of your case
- Court and attorney fees
- Forfeiture of property, interest, position, and any benefits connected with the corrupt activity or enterprise
Without a determined and knowledgeable attorney by your side during your sentencing hearing, you may end up facing a lengthy jail sentence and loss of assets. Luftman, Heck, and Associates will work to demonstrate that your property and assets were held or obtained separately from the corrupt activity.
How an Ohio Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
You should hire a lawyer as soon as you know or suspect that you are being investigated for racketeering. An Ohio criminal defense attorney will help you decide what kind of action you should take through arrest, detainment, prosecution, and sentencing.
Many lawful organizations may be vulnerable to prosecution under the RICO Act or Ohio’s racketeering laws. If you’re being investigated or charged with racketeering, act now and get the protection of an aggressive criminal defense team. The Columbus criminal defense attorneys of Luftman, Heck, and Associates are ready to begin fighting for you today. Call us now at (614) 500-3836 and get a free and confidential consultation of your case.
Trust Columbus Racketeering Attorneys from LHA Today Contact Us.
If you have been charged with a federal crime, you’re probably wondering what your options are. The Ohio racketeering attorneys at Luftman, Heck & Associates have years of experience handling these types of cases and winning optimal outcomes for our clients. Call an Ohio federal crime lawyer today for a free consultation. Contact us at (614) 500-3836 or email us via firstname.lastname@example.org.