Securities Fraud charges may encompass a wide-range of criminality as it relates to deceptive practices and trading within the markets. In the age of instant, limitless information, federal regulatory agencies have broadened their authority and statutes in order to identify and charge individuals or companies that they suspect to engage in such conduct.
Securities fraud is covered by 18 U.S.C. §1348 and applies to anyone who knowingly defrauds or tries to defraud someone via some type of scheme having to do with commodities and securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. This specific act, established by the SEC, governs the trading of stocks and bonds in the United States, and essentially prohibits the attempt of actual defrauding of a person in connection with a commodity for future delivery, or by obtaining through means or false or fraudulent pretenses, any sale or option on a commodity for future delivery.
If you have been accused of securities fraud and are found guilty, you could face fines, up to 25 years in prison, or both. Importantly, securities fraud charges are frequently coupled with other serious felony offenses, including but not limited to bank fraud and wire fraud. Oversight agencies such as FINRA and the SEC will typically build these cases based upon years of investigation, especially where signs of market manipulation and insider trading are evidence.
Securities fraud charges require a federal defense attorney who is well-versed in this specific area of the law, and one who is prepared to conduct a counter-investigation by way of subpoenas and independent forensic accounting.
If you are accused of securities fraud, it is imperative that you hire a former prosecutor and prominent criminal defense attorney who has dealt with these offenses on both sides of the courtroom. The steps your defense attorney takes, by way of investigation and creative advocacy, will increase your chances of successfully walking away from these serious accusations and shape the rest of your life.
The sooner you put your case in the hands of an experienced criminal defense lawyer, the more opportunity you will have to work toward a favorable outcome.