According to a recent study from Syracuse University, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) is slacking in its pursuit of white collar criminals. The study claims that prosecutions have fallen 25% in five years and are the lowest they’ve been in the past 30 years.
Experts in the field say that they believe that many of the DOJ’s resources have simply been diverted to more pressing matters, like issues involving national security, anti-terrorism efforts and immigration offenses.
It’s probably good to note that the DOJ disagrees with the study’s assessment. They claim that their own internal records indicate that they charged 33% more people with crimes in 2018 than they did in 2017. They also claim that they’ve increased their conviction rate 40% and recovered more than $1 billion in fines, forfeitures, penalties and restitution agreements.
If you’re wise, you’ll read between the lines and realize that federal prosecutors are focusing on bringing more definitive charges and tighter cases against individuals suspected of white collar criminal activity. They are, in essence, working smarter — rather than harder. The Syracuse study may or may not have accurate numbers — but it doesn’t mean that anybody can relax their guard and assume that the federal authorities won’t be looking their way. If you’re involved in any kind of financial scheme, you could still get a knock on your door any day now from the feds.
White collar crimes are often crimes of opportunity. Good people sometimes find themselves in rough financial situations and — when there’s a lot of money around them all the time — they can be tempted into actions they’d never normally consider. If you made a mistake, get legal help before an investigation starts. Learn more about your legal options by reading our blog or contacting our office today.