Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorneys
Why You Should Always Fight White Collar Crime Charges

Why You Should Always Fight White Collar Crime Charges

White collar crimes have a reputation for being the “soft” kind of crime. Because we’ve heard stories of bankers getting a few months’ house arrest and a slap on the wrist for massive financial fraud, defendants tend to assume that their charges will end with a fairly lenient sentence. Even clients being prosecuted by federal authorities assume that they’ll be able to get a few months’ house arrest and be done.

If you’ve been charged with a white collar crime, you might be tempted to be hopeful. You might think that taking a plea deal is your way out of this situation. Maybe it is—but today’s blog is about being able to gauge that risk against the benefits of hiring a lawyer to fight your charges.

Penalties for Repeated White Collar Offenses

The state of Florida has always harshly prosecuted white collar crimes, especially crimes that target the elderly or large groups of people. Florida has a heightened classification for white collar crimes that are committed on similar groups, with similar results, accomplices, or methods—essentially, if you are an offender of two or more similar white collar crimes. This classification is called “aggravated white collar crime” as stipulated by the White Collar Crime Victim Protection Act (2001). If someone commits aggravated white collar crime against 20 people, 10 elderly people, or any institution part of the Florida state government, then their charge will be classified as a first-degree felony.

People who commit aggravated white collar crime under these circumstances are liable to receive:

  • 30 years’ imprisonment
  • $500,000 in fines
  • Orders to pay restitution
  • Orders to pay court fees

30 years’ imprisonment and half a million in fines is not a slap on the wrist—that’s the same punishment levied against someone who has committed manslaughter. That’s why it’s so vital to fight every single charge, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant:

If you’re hit with a second charge within 5 years—40% of white collar defendants have a record—then you’ll qualify for felony sentencing. Avoiding harsh sentences designed for repeat offenders means thinking about your future by fighting for your present. Prosecutors like to imply that fighting back will result in a harsher sentence, but that’s not true. Fighting your charges helps avoid both present punishment and future penalties.

Prosecutors want to save the state money and time. Neither of those are in your best interests. Don’t roll over just because you think there’s an open-and-shut case against you. Don’t roll over just because you’re afraid that fighting charges will make things worse.

Think About Your Reality, Not Your Hopes

People charged with corporate crime like to think about what other people have received in the past. In exchange for plea deals, white collar defendants have received a few months imprisonment or were allowed to serve jail time from home. However, when you’re facing down the barrel of the justice system, you can’t afford to think that way. You need to think about what you are vulnerable to.

If a judge has handed out 1 million lenient sentences prior to your trial, that doesn’t mean anything for your case. Too many people have believed that a lenient judge would come down on their side, only to find themselves facing a years-long prison sentence.

If you’re offered a plea deal or you’re casting your hopes on a judge’s mercy, remember that you have:

  • No guarantee of house arrest
  • No guarantee of a short sentence
  • No guarantee of a minimum security prison

The only real hope you have is an aggressive criminal defense attorney with a record of success. Judges aren’t obligated to be on your side—but your lawyer is. They’re the ones you can trust to fight for you, to work on every possible front for an acquittal or a dismissal. You can also bet that if you end up taking a plea deal, your attorney will make it a lot more advantageous for you than the prosecutor would.

Categories:

Our Victories

  • Not Guilty, Acquitted at Trial Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon

    Outcome: Client was alleged to have used his vehicle to strike victim, and there was video of the incident which could have been interpreted to actually show the crime. The state was offering significant prison time before trial. By meticulous planning and strategic cross-examination to expose the motives and fabrications by the alleged victim, and an eyewitness in support of the alleged victim, Rudenberg & Glasser convinced a jury to acquit the client and avoid a mandatory long prison sentence.

  • Domestic Violence
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser went to trial and were able to show during cross-examination that the alleged victim was the aggressor and that the client acted in self-defense. The jury returned a not guilty verdict almost immediately following trial.
  • Domestic Violence With 911 Call and Pictures
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser took the case to trial after fleshing out inconsistencies in the alleged victim's account. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty and the client's unblemished record was preserved.
  • False Arrest

    Outcome: Attorney Glasser was able to show with video footage that his client did not commit the alleged offense and furthermore, the police officer who ordered his arrest was negligent in his investigation and improperly supervised.

    Read more about this story on the Sun Sentinel.

  • Probation Only Federal Conspiracy to Commit Mail & Wire Fraud

    Outcome: Through compelling sentencing memorandum and passionate oral argument, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to convince the federal court judge to sentence their client to treatment for substance abuse, and no incarceration, even though the client had a lengthy criminal history and the Government was seeking prison time.

  • Felony DUI: Client was in an Accident and Left the Scene
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser filed a compelling motion to suppress evidence based on law enforcement's actions during the investigation. Rudenberg & Glasser were able to persuade the prosecutor prior to the motion to suppress hearing that the charge should be broken down from a felony to a misdemeanor and the client was offered probation instead of the previously sought prison sentence.
  • Final Injunction Hearing
    Outcome: Client desperately needed to avoid a final injunction on his record. Rudenberg & Glasser defended him at the hearing and proved that the Petitioner was not in fear for her safety. The judge dismissed the injunction.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor: Resisting Police Officer Without Violence
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg presented evidence that the police officer’s version of events was not credible, and that accusations were made to justify excessive use of force by police officer. Jury returned a verdict of not guilty in less than five minutes.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanors: DUI & Possession of Cannabis
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg won a motion arguing the DUI checkpoint was conducted in violation of the Fourth Amendment, and the Judge entered an order suppressing all evidence. Case was dropped by the State, and client avoided a mandatory conviction for DUI, as well as mandatory fines and license suspensions.
  • $250,000 Pre-Trial Personal Injury

    Outcome: Client was injured by a malfunctioning door, requiring stitches and leaving a scar on client's knee. There were limited medical bills and no surgeries, but through extremely challenging and successful negotiations, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to secure a settlement of $250,000.

What Our Clients Are Saying

We go above and beyond to be there for clients to provide them with the best outcome possible.
  • “I’ve used Mike and Eric for my cases since 2012.”

    J.R

  • “Proved to be the best legal team there is! They not only helped me avoid jail time, but got my probation terminated the same day!”

    Dallas B.

  • “You were so very wonderful in court.”

    P.M.

  • “They Were There with Me Every Step of the Way”

    Dan

  • “They will give you honest, truthful, realistic counsel and they will fight hard for you; as they did for me.”

    Donovan

  • “I don’t usually post reviews but I had to make an exception in this case. Mike and everyone at the office were beyond helpful. Went to court twice once to find out my charges the last to find out everything was dropped. I couldn’t have asked for a more pro”

    G.P.

  • “I Was Able to Have My Name Cleared”

    Domestic Violence Client

  • “There are no words for the love and respect I have for Mike and I wouldn't even think of using anyone else as my attorney.”

    JW

  • “A great legal team”

    A. T.

  • “Here to help you at all costs!”

    L.L.

  • “I don’t usually post reviews but I had to make an exception in this case. Mike and everyone at the office were beyond helpful. Went to court twice once to find out my charges the last to find out everything was dropped. I couldn’t have asked for a more pro”

    G.P.

  • “Very professional very honest and reliable, cannot thank them enough.”

    D Gonzalez

  • “It's nice to know that you actually cared and it didn't seem like this case was just another folder.”

    John J.

  • “He Went Out of His Way to Go the Extra Mile”

    David

  • “I would recommend them to anyone that’s looking for someone that really cares!”

    R.N.