J. Pete Theodocion, Attorney at Law
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Augusta Criminal Defense Blog

Does the U.S. still have the death penalty?

Federal crimes are serious because they often come with minimum penalties. They include many types of crimes such as carjacking, kidnapping, federal hate crimes and others.

Federal crimes are special because they specifically violate federal laws created by the government. As a result, they have their own types of penalties.

Minimum sentences may apply to your fraud case

Fraud crimes are significant because they are federal crimes. Federal crimes have their own penalties, which often come with prison sentences.

Fraud and financial crimes steal assets or money with the intention of financial gain as a result. There are many types including:

  • Identity theft
  • Money laundering
  • Tax evasion
  • Tax fraud
  • White collar crimes
  • Racketeering
  • Embezzlement
  • Mortgage fraud

6 people face federal charges after investigations

Federal charges are significant, so if you're facing them as a result of drug possession or distribution, you need to take steps to avoid conviction. In light of the significant impact of the opioid crisis in America, there are more drug busts taking place than in the past. More people are being arrested, and harsher penalties are being levied.

Take, for example, this report from Dec. 31 on approximately two dozen indictments that were returned during December. In total, 25 people were charged with federal crimes; six of those people were from South Georgia.

Son acting as power of attorney charged with 18 counts of fraud

When someone awards another person power of attorney in their estate, that individual has a duty to act in the incapacitated person’s best interests. If they don’t, it can lead to federal charges.

Such is the case against John Jerome O’Hara of Kentucky, who was charged with 18 counts of fraud by a grand jury. This includes 10 counts of bank fraud, four counts of wire fraud and four of “access device fraud.” 

No one is too successful to be safe from federal charges

If you have ever looked into white collar crimes, you know that they were much more common when it was harder to track accounts and communications. Today, those who participate in white collar crimes often leave behind digital trails of their wrongdoings.

In the news, you may have seen that more people than ever are being arrested for white collar crimes, like fraud and tax evasion. One person, a top-ranking executive from China, was arrested upon landing in Vancouver. She was accused of violating laws regarding U.S. sanctions. She's also among several big names that have been arrested for white collar crimes.

Are bump stocks legal?

There is a new ban on bump stocks, which has made some people in Georgia concerned. Bump stocks are accessories that can be added to guns to make a semi-automatic weapon fire similarly to an automatic firearm.

In October 2017, a mass shooting took the lives of 58 people, and the president stated that he would ban bump stocks in the future. That has now happened.

Federal and local authorities team up to arrest 27 people

After a four-month-long investigation known as Operation 30906, state, local and federal authorities arrested 27 individuals earlier this week in the Richmond County region of Augusta, Georgia. The code name for the operation, 30906, refers to a zip code in the area known for a high rate of violent crime, drug dealing and even counterfeiting.

This is not the first wave of arrests conducted by a joint operation involving the Richmond County Sheriff's office, the U.S. Attorney's Office and the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation). Back in September, nine individuals reportedly involved in a "sex, money, murder gang" were taken into custody.

Federal crimes: Errors on your tax forms could be fraud

There are so many federal crimes in the United States that it is possible to commit one without even realizing you have done something wrong. Tax fraud or evasion is an example of a crime that falls in the federal jurisdiction. Unfortunately, many people living in Augusta, Georgia, may be committing tax fraud unintentionally.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recognizes that American citizens are always looking for ways to reduce the taxes they owe each year. In fact, the IRS acknowledges that certain attempts to reduce or even avoid taxes are not federal crimes. However, many hard-working citizens who have tried to reduce their tax obligations suddenly find themselves facing an audit or an investigation by the IRS.

Man convicted on fraud charges related to ATM card scam

Fraud used to be mostly matters of confidence scams and doctored accounts for businesses. Georgia has also seen its share of insurance fraud cases related to arson and other crimes. Now, the effectiveness of widespread digital networks can make fraud a matter as simple as a few clicks of a mouse.

Identity theft and the misuse of identifying accounts or documents is now a common occurrence on all parts of the Internet, and the crimes often span across jurisdictions, making prosecution difficult. As a result, many effective cases prosecuting fraud are federal cases brought by U.S. attorneys.

New legislation could bring substantial changes to federal laws

There is new legislation that is on the brink of passing which may be the most substantial new federal criminal law changes in a generation. The legislation called the First Step Act is being hailed as a critical movement to create a fairer system of justice. One of the main reasons there is optimism of this legislation being passed is there is strong bi-partisan support for it. The crux of the First Step Act will be to shorten some federal prison sentences.

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J. Pete Theodocion, Attorney at Law
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Augusta, GA 30901

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Phone: 706-250-8762
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