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What is the RICO Act?

The Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, simply referred to as RICO, was passed in 1970 to help prosecutors pursue charges against organized crime organizations such as mobs, gangs and cartels. Recently, even well-known celebrities have been charged through RICO for their alleged involvement with these types of organizations. In the United States, organized crime is generally defined as an enterprise looking for financial gain through illegal activities. But note, now these enterprises can be illegal or legal entities allowing prosecutors to use the law against everything from mobs to corporations to even politicians, With RICO, if a member is charged with a crime, prosecutors can then charge anyone else within that organization of a crime. Therefore, several members can be indicted for offenses they didn’t actually commit themselves. Nonetheless, we can help create a defense case for your innocence.

Crimes Included Under RICO
For an enterprise to be charged through RICO, there must be two violations within 10 years from the members. Some common crimes under RICO are listed below:
-bribery
-counterfeiting
-drug crimes
-embezzlement
-extortion
-fraud
-gambling
-human trafficking
-homicide
-kidnapping
-robbery

RICO Penalties
A RICO conviction can carry severe imprisonment and financial consequences. Those convicted face up to 20 years in federal prison or even life for crimes such as murder. On top of that, those convicted can face a fine of up to $250,000. In order to prove there was a racketeering offense, a prosecutor must prove all the following elements of the crime beyond any reasonable doubt:
– the organization engaged in a criminal act that affected commerce
– you are a participant in the organization
– you intentionally participated in racketeering activities
– you engaged in at least 2 illegal racketeering acts within 10 years

Defense Against RICO Charges
Here at the law office of Michael B. Cohen, we can help you understand more about RICO charges and create the best defense to fight against your charges. Call us today at 954.928.0059 for a free consultation.

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