White-collar crimes don’t always draw the outrage from the public that violent ones do. People in Mississippi and around the country may worry about their safety when concerned about armed robbers and other assailants. Perceptions and worries could shift when reports of “cleaned out” bank accounts and identity theft hit the news. Reports about financial fraud and broker misconduct might lead some to fret about losing their life savings. The U.S. Department of Justice understands those concerns and intends to ramp up investigations and prosecutions of white-collar crimes.
White-collar crimes are in the DOJ’s prosecutorial sights
In October of 2021, the DOJ’s Deputy Attorney General announced plans to crack down on wrongdoing by corporations and private individuals engaged in white-collar crimes. The DOJ notes that national security concerns partially prompt the decision, along with other reasons. Likely, public outrage over financial fraud and high-profile hacking cases drove the DOJ’s new direction.
Cryptocurrency’s rise may also factor into the DOJ’s approach to dealing with white-collar criminals. The secretive nature of cryptocurrency makes digital assets preferable to shadowy criminal organizations. Law enforcement might now take a closer look at those organizations and their crypto endeavors.
Overzealous investigations and prosecutions
The DOJ’s “enthusiasm” over prosecuting white-color crimes may come with the risks of violating the accused rights. Rushing to procure evidence without search warrants could lead to illegal arrests. A criminal defense strategy may question the admissibility of evidence or even witness testimony.
Law enforcement officials could put pressure on a witness to implicate someone. A nervous and scared witness may lie and implicate another person. Sometimes, law enforcement could coerce a false confession in a rush to close a case.
There might be instances where the prosecution’s case appears so strong a guilty verdict seems likely. Perhaps a plea bargain deal would be worth pursuing in such situations.