Asset Forfeiture & Federal Crimes
Learning of criminal charges can be trying and scary for a defendant and their family. How will they make bail, and what happens if they are convicted? Federal crimes, however, are a different matter altogether. If a suspect allegedly committed a federal criminal offense, government agencies will use all resources at their disposal to obtain a conviction. In fact, often defendants seemingly fly under the radar for months or years while the U.S. Government is building the strongest case possible. However, once someone receives a target letter, they may also be subject to indictment and asset forfeiture. Asset forfeiture occurs when assets and personal property are seized in a federal criminal case. The United States Government has the power to issue seizure or garnishment on all of your assets, including real and personal property. If your accounts or assets are frozen, you are not allowed to sell items, liquidate funds or otherwise dissipate income. If you are convicted, the government can seize your assets to pay fines you owe because of your sentencing, or if property was allegedly obtained due to criminal activities. If you are located in South Florida and received a target letter or are subject to a federal criminal investigation, contact Attorney William Wallshein as soon as possible.
Seizure of Assets and Personal Property
If a defendant is indicted for federal crimes such as racketeering, criminal conspiracy or money laundering, for example, a federal prosecutor for the U.S. Government can ask a federal magistrate to order a federal seizure of all assets deemed to be obtained due to criminal activities or illegal income. For example, if a defendant was charged with racketeering and drug possession with intent to distribute, the Government can seize the defendant’s primary home, investment properties, cars and other personal possessions like jewelry or furniture if the prosecution has evidence establishing the items were allegedly purchased with illegal funds. Confiscating the property is intended to curb the defendant’s illegal activity. Even cash, investment and brokerage accounts, can be frozen or seized during the asset forfeiture process. The defendant does not need to be convicted or await sentencing before items are seized. And, if the defendant attempted to sell or offload property to a third party to escape seizure, the property can still be seized from that third party.
Asset forfeiture is not to be taken lightly. The experience can be traumatic for family even if they are not implicated. Your reputation may be damaged from the fallout and it can be difficult obtaining temporary housing if the government has seized your real property in addition to personal property. Even if your spouse is not implicated in criminal activity, joint assets and bank accounts are not immune from seizure. If you are incarcerated and your accounts are frozen, how will you provide for your family? There is no doubt about it, if you have received a target letter from any federal entity or have been notified of pending criminal charges, you need a seasoned lawyer. Attorney William Wallshein understands the nuances of the federal criminal process and can mitigate or stop the asset seizure process depending on the circumstances of your case. He will work tirelessly to protect clients and their personal liberties. Criminal charges don’t even have to be filed before property can be seized, so it’s critical that you act quickly if under investigation or requested to testify.
Schedule a Consultation with Attorney William Wallshein
If you or a family member were recently arrested, arraigned or served with a target letter in a federal investigation, you must act quickly to preserve your legal rights. West Palm Beach criminal attorney William Wallshein possesses more than three decades of criminal defense experience including federal crimes and is well respected in the legal community. He can assist you in investigating a claim and possibly to prevent an indictment or preemptive asset forfeiture. Call Mr. Wallshein today to schedule a consultation and review your case options.