Fort Lauderdale Money Laundering Attorney
Sound defense strategies from an established attorney
The truth is that if you are found guilty of a scheme to hide criminal proceeds by making them appear to be generated by a legitimate source, you have committed a federal felony punishable by fines of $500,000 or more. And because money laundering is often tied to organized crime — or even terrorist activities — you can also be looking at as many as 30 years of incarceration.
Our Fort Lauderdale money laundering attorneys use our knowledge, experience and skills to help you. Federal criminal defense can mount an aggressive defense for clients charged with money laundering. Attorney Kevin Kulik is a former prosecutor who knows how to counter evidence and find holes in the government’s case. This skill set is especially important because the prosecution does not need to prove that a defendant knew from what specified unlawful activity (SUA) the money came, but only that the accused had reason to suspect it was dirty.
Because the U.S. attorney can create a case based at least partially on circumstantial evidence, we, as your federal crime law firm, have to stay on our toes and always be one step ahead — something we have done successfully for clients in Broward County and throughout South Florida for a long time.
What must be present in a charge of money laundering
Money laundering is a process by which money that is gained through an illicit operation (such as drug trafficking) is deliberately put into the financial system. For a money laundering case to be viable, there must be:
- A movement of money
- Direct or circumstantial evidence that the specified unlawful activity was the source of the proceeds
- Proof that the accused knew that the money came from an illegal activity
- Evidence that the accused tried to conceal the proceeds or move more than $10,000 through a bank, credit union or even through car dealerships, casinos or other places where money can be spent
The Money Laundering Control Act is why this is a federal offense
A crime is a federal offense either because it was committed on federal property or because it was declared illegal by the U.S. Congress. Passed in 1986 by Congress, the Money Laundering Control Act criminalized money laundering. Money laundering legislation has been amended and strengthened since then. Today, the USA PATRIOT Act, passed in 2001, includes legislation that requires increased sharing of information between government and financial institutions and enhanced due diligence. It also expands the government’s legal arsenal in the prosecution of alleged money launderers and is part of a larger effort to combat terrorism by making it more difficult for groups to finance their terrorist activities.
Can the government really seize your assets through civil forfeiture in a money laundering case?
Indeed it can — and it does. In cases of civil forfeiture (administrative), any amount of cash can be forfeited, as can all other personal property valued at $500,000 or less. If a vehicle — whether car, truck, boat or even airplane — was used in conjunction with drug trafficking, it can be seized regardless of its worth.
Learn more about why you need an experienced, skilled advocate working for you
Once you have more information about the severity of a money laundering charge, you understand why it is so important to have an advocate who is familiar with federal procedures. To talk to Kevin J. Kulik, P.A. about your situation, please call us at 954-761-9411 or contact us online to schedule a free and confidential consultation. We are located near the River Walk zone in Fort Lauderdale and can make appointments offsite or after business hours, as needed. Our Fort Lauderdale money laundering attorneys can help you.