The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization or “RICO” laws were implemented at the state and federal level to help put an end to organized crime. Racketeering is a very serious charge, as it involves allegations of engaging in illegal business ventures or other illegal acts in connection with organized crime.
RICO violations can occur if an individual is charged with using a legitimate business venture to benefit an organized crime group, such as the mafia or another similar criminal organization. This can include using extortion or running a legitimate company with the profits going toward an organized crime group.
The ultimate goal of RICO laws is to help put an end to the financing for organized crime, so as a result, these cases are prosecuted very aggressively. Therefore, if you’re being investigated or have been arrested for a RICO violation such as racketeering, it’s vital that you trust your case to an experienced RICO defense lawyer who has the experience and knowledge required to launch an effective defense.
At The Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, as we represent clients across Texas, including in Plano, Dallas, and Fort Worth. We provide aggressive, highly strategic defense to clients who are facing serious white collar crimes, including racketeering, embezzlement, fraud and beyond. Our goal is to bring about a favorable outcome for you, our client.
If you or a loved one have been arrested for a RICO law violation such as racketeering, contact our Texas criminal defense lawyers to schedule a free, confidential case evaluation. Call The Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass today at (972) 422-9999.
Common Questions and Concerns About RICO Violations Defense
The RICO laws impose some extremely harsh penalties to those who are convicted of having links to organized crime. As a result, it’s totally normal to feel frightened and uncertain about your future if you are being investigated or prosecuted for a RICO-related crime.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, we believe that by addressing your questions and concerns, we can alleviate much of the worry and stress that you’re experiencing. So we invite you to read the following overview of some of the most common issues that we address on RICO violations.
What are RICO Laws?
Racketeer influenced and corrupt organization or “RICO” laws apply to cases where “a person commits an offense if, with the intent to establish, maintain or participate in a combination or in the profits of a combination or as a member of a criminal street gang, the person commits or conspires to commit” any one of a number of crimes. Notably, a “combination” refers to a group of three or more individuals who collaborate to commit a crime.
According to Texas law, RICO violations can involve any one of the following crimes (amongst many others):
murder or capital murder;
robbery or aggravated robbery;
kidnapping or aggravated kidnapping;
promotion of prostitution or compelling prostitution;
unlawful manufacture, transport, repair or sale of firearms;
unlawful manufacture, delivery, dispensation or distribution of controlled substances or dangerous drugs; or
unlawful wholesale promotion of obscene material.
These are just some of the many offenses that can be prosecuted as a RICO violation if investigators have reason to believe that a suspect has links to organized crime.
What are the Penalties for RICO Law Violations in Collin County?
If your case is prosecuted as a RICO violation, defense is made a bit more complex due to the more serious penalties that individuals face if convicted.
Under current laws, Texas RICO violations are upgraded by one level in terms of the seriousness. In Texas, there are several levels of seriousness for crimes. They are as follows, from least serious to most serious:
Class C misdemeanor;
Class B misdemeanor;
Class A misdemeanor;
State jail felony;
Second-degree felony; and
Therefore, if you are charged with a crime that would typically be prosecuted as a third-degree felony, it would be upgraded in seriousness to a second-degree felony under the RICO laws if it’s believed that the crime was committed in connection with organized crime.
The one exception to this is in the case of first-degree felonies, which remain first-degree felonies since there is no higher level in terms of seriousness.
What are the Defenses for RICO Law Violations?
There are a number of possible defense for clients who are accused of a RICO violation. Each case has unique circumstances, so every client’s defense strategy is crafted based upon the precise facts and circumstances of the case.
That said, one possible defense to a RICO violation is that you were not affiliated with a criminal organization.
Additionally, it may also be argued that the individual did not know that his actions were benefitting a criminal organization.
If the prosecutor cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you are linked to a criminal organization and/or knowingly benefitting a criminal organization, then it becomes extremely challenging to convict an individual for a RICO law violation.
Contact Our Collin County RICO Defense Lawyers if You’re Accused of Ties to Organized Crime
Finding yourself accused of racketeering or committing crimes to benefit organized crime can be quite stressful and frightening, especially when you consider the fact that RICO violations carry an even harsher penalty than the same crime committed under different circumstances.
If you or your loved one is suspected of racketeering under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), obtain experienced legal help from a criminal defense lawyer. The federal government devotes substantial resources pursuing additional penalties for individuals convicted at the state level for criminal acts tied to a gang or a network of people. Illegal actions made in connection to a large network are prosecuted with federal sentencing guidelines. Our firm will act quickly to develop an aggressive defense strategy focused on minimizing any potential damages.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, our clients span all of Dallas County, Collin County, and Denton County, including the cities of Dallas, Fort Worth, and Plano, Texas.
The attorney who founded the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass has been in practice since 1993. Attorney Grass has had an impressive career, which includes time as a U.S. Navy Judge Advocate (JAG). He was selected as one of the Top 100 Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Association and also maintains an AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®.
If you or a loved one are being investigated for a RICO violation or you’ve been arrested for a crime that is being prosecuted as a RICO violation, contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass today. We will provide you with a free, fully confidential evaluation. Just call (972) 422-9999.
Some situations in life require the need for an experienced, successful, driven, and compassionate defense attorney. I am describing Attorney Jeffrey C. Grass. Jeffrey is both assertive and brilliant in his field and is an exceptional defense attorney. I give him my highest endorsement, and strongly recommend him to anyone who needs the best defense. Jeffrey is very knowledgeable, thorough and well respected in the court room. He has helped our family through a very difficult time resulting in the outcome we had hoped for and for that we very eternally grateful.