Money laundering involves disguising the origins of money which is obtained through illegal means. After money is laundered it appears to be the proceeds of a legitimate business interest. Typically, money laundering is associated with drug trafficking, embezzlement, bribes, or any number of other fraudulent activities.

Types of Money Laundering

There are many ways to launder money, which can include the following simple methods:

  • Cash Businesses - businesses which deal primarily with cash can serve as a front for money laundering. A business can combine criminally derived cash with legitimate revenue in account deposits.
  • Cash Smuggling - this involves physically removing the money to a jurisdiction which has more favorable banking privacy laws, such as an offshore bank.
  • Real Estate- real estate purchases with illegal proceeds and subsequent reselling can make money look legitimate. Manipulations of prices can increase the effectiveness of this method.
  • Structuring - breaking large amounts of money into smaller deposits to avoid reporting requirements, and sometimes using these smaller amounts to purchase bearer instruments.
  • Casinos - using dirty money at a track or casino, and then cashing in to disguise the same money as gambling profits. If the casino is part of the organization, the money will simply be lost to the casino, and is then claimed as casino profit. .

Penalties for Money Laundering

Convictions for money laundering can result in prison sentences of up to 20 years, in addition to fines up to $500,000 or twice the value of property involved in the transaction, whichever is greater. Federal prosecutors are known to pursue money laundering charges in complex cases in order to enhance charges. In 2009, over 81,000 people were convicted of money laundering, though money laundering was the most serious or primary charge in only 800 of those cases.

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Whether money laundering is the primary charge you are facing, or just an add-on to other serious allegations, our attorneys can help. We have the experience with complex criminal money matters you need. You are entitled to mount an aggressive defense, contact our Boston money laundering attorneys today.

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