What is Money Laundering and the Charges

Most individuals do not fully understand what money laundering is.  This includes what sort of actions really constitute money laundering, the charges, and possible legal repercussions.  Most of the time, people associate cash laundering with intricate criminal organizations moving big quantities of money or think of it as something that only happens with money obtained from selling drugs.  In truth, money laundering can be the result of profits as low as a few hundred dollars, involving a wide range of prohibited activity.

What is Money Laundering Exactly?

Cash laundering is the procedure of attempting to conceal, camouflage, hide, or process money gained from criminal tasks to make the funds appear to be from a legitimate or lawful source.  These instances include illegal activities such as prostitution, selling drugs, illegal gambling, theft, kickbacks, and bribery.  There are many different approaches that people will take in order to try and legitimize or hide this money.  Examples include depositing the funds into several different checking and savings accounts, making false investments, presents, gifts, acquisitions, moving titles, or running the funds through various companies.  Essentially any activity that involves taking money from criminal activity and attempting to legitimize these profits is money laundering.

What are the Charges for Laundering in Utah?

Under Utah regulation, it is illegal for a person to participate in any type of economic deal while either recognizing or suspecting that the cash, or proceeds came from illegal activity.  The individual does not need to understand what certain illegal task generated the earnings, or where the cash stemmed from.  Rather, the cash does not come from, or could not have come from an illegal source.  Another way of saying this is that money laundering does not require the person to know the money came from dealing drugs, only that the source could not have come from legitimate and legal business dealings.

Profit laundering is a felony and the level of the charge depends on the quantity or worth of the property involved. Dealing with a relatively small amount say, $300 is typically going to result in a less serious charge that $100,000.   For transactions over $300 but less than $20,000, it is a third-degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison.  For transactions of at least $20,000 but less than $100,000, it is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison. For transactions of $100,000 or more, it is a first-degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison. Money laundering charges can also result in a civil penalty of not more than the value of the financial transactions involved or $25,000, whichever is greater.

Cash laundering fees can also result in a civil fine of not more than the worth of the monetary transactions entailed or $25,000, whichever is higher.

Provided the seriousness of money laundering costs, anybody dealing with these charges need to seek advice from a skilled attorney to talk about the possible legal defenses offered to them.

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