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What Should You Do If Someone Close To You Gets Charged With A Crime?


A brother and sister from southeastern Florida are currently facing criminal charges for Medicare fraud.  Ted Albin of Stuart and Erin Foley of Loxahatchee own a durable medical equipment (DME) company that provides supplies such as wheelchairs and supplemental oxygen equipment.  Their company allegedly filed more than $9 million of fraudulent claims to Medicare.  The criminal complaint against them indicates that Albin and Foley allegedly conspired with other people and exchanged kickbacks with them as part of the scheme, but so far, no other defendants have been charged.  The defendants are the wife and brother-in-law of Randy Foley, Captain of the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office, but he also has not been charged with a crime.  If your family members or employees are being accused of a financial crime, contact a West Palm Beach white collar crime lawyer.

Can You Refuse to Cooperate With a Criminal Investigation?

The assumption behind the Fourth and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution is that the state’s authority to search your property and to compel you to speak is very limited.  Therefore, failure to report criminal activity or suspected criminal activity that you witness does not constitute a crime; the exceptions relate to “mandatory reporters,” such as teachers and physicians, who work with children in a professional capacity and must report it to the authorities if they reasonably suspect that a child under their care has experienced physical or sexual abuse.

In other words, if a family member, friend, or coworker of yours does illegal things in your presence or says or does things that you think seem shady (such as taking pills from a prescription bottle with the label removed or possessing valuable items that you think are stolen), you have the right to mind your own business.  If you receive a subpoena to testify as a witness or to give a deposition, you must respond to the subpoena and provide testimony.  If you think that it is unfair for the court to call you as a witness, you can hire a lawyer to petition the court to quash the subpoena and free you of the obligation to testify.  When you testify, you must answer truthfully; if you lie under oath, you can be charged with perjury.  If you think that your truthful answer to a question could cause you to get criminal charges, plead the Fifth Amendment.

If you are a business owner, and financial crimes occur at your place of business, you could get into legal trouble if you reasonably should have known that employees of your company were engaging in fraud or money laundering.  Not only could you be charged with conspiracy to commit financial crimes, but you could also face civil lawsuits from people who suffered financial losses because of your employees’ actions.

Contact a West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

Attorney William Wallshein has more than 38 years of experience, including five years as a prosecutor in Palm Beach County.  Contact William Wallshein P.A. in West Palm Beach, Florida to discuss your case.




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