White Collar Crimes Carry Big Sentences
- A 39-year-old Otsego woman who worked for a mortgage-title company recently pleaded guilty to mortgage fraud, after helping two men defraud real-estate lenders of more than $7 million. The pair bought more than 180 properties. They then borrowed money based on the properties' values, and defaulted on their mortgage payments, taking the cash and walking away from the mortgages. The woman faced a possible sentence of 20 years in prison.
- Three Austin, Minn. brothers face deportation and forgery charges after it was discovered they had obtained false IDs through which they were working at two meat-processing companies. So not only were they looking at jail time, but also potentially the loss of their chance to live and work in the United States.
- In one of the biggest recent cybercrime cases, a portable hard drive was stolen in March from Minnesota Company Educational Credit Management Corp. The device contained personal information for more than three million people. The perpetrators have not yet been found, but they will likely face very serious charges if caught, as our state has been cracking down on this kind of mass identity theft. In 2007, state law was changed to stiffen sentences, and a single identity theft that led to more than $35,000 of loss could now carry a 20-year sentence and $100,000 fine.
If you are charged with a white-collar crime, know that it is a very serious situation that could mean substantial prison time. Guidance from an experienced Minnesota attorney will be important as you prepare to defend yourself against these types of charges.