If you find yourself in a situation where you may be faced with charges for a white collar crime, it is important to know what to expect. Unlike most other crimes, most people who are under investigation for white collar crime will often be directly notified about it by the law enforcement agency shortly after the investigation has begun. Of course, there are typically quite a few things that take place prior to any notification as well, so it is good to know what to watch out for.
If you have noticed any of the following five signs, you will want to contact an attorney as soon as possible. The faster you get good representation, the more effective your defense can be.
Contacted by a Law Enforcement Agent
In many cases, a law enforcement agent will contact people who they suspect may be involved in white collar crime well before they actually begin an official investigation. They may try to talk to you about the company you work for, or other employees of the company. While it may not seem like you are the target of their visit, it is still very important to discuss the event with an experienced white collar attorney.
Subpoena for Business Documents
If a federal prosecutor’s office has filed a subpoena for any type of business documents, it is a clear sign that someone is under investigation. If you are worried that it might be you, consult an attorney immediately to see how you should proceed. While you can’t refuse a subpoena, there are often things you can do to help give yourself some level of protection.
You are presented with a Search Warrant
If you or your business is presented with a search warrant to seize any type of business documents, it is obviously a signal that you are under investigation. You cannot refuse the law enforcement access, but you can contact an attorney as quickly as possible to ensure the agents don’t do anything that is outside the scope of the search warrant.
Contacted by a State Agency
It is not always a law enforcement agency that will be contacting you during the initial stages of an investigation. Sometimes other agencies will be involved as well. If you are being contacted by any government agency, it is safe to assume you are under investigation, so act accordingly.
Received a Target Letter
One thing that is fairly unique to white collar crime investigations is the target or subject letter. This is a letter that is often sent by the prosecuting attorney to the target of an investigation letting them know that there is an open investigation. The letter will let you know what the investigation is about, and what rights and responsibilities you have.
If you have any reason to suspect that you may be under investigation, it is imperative that you contact a white collar defense attorney immediately.
Please contact us today to learn more!