50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


The state must prove:

  1. Defendant used or had the object in his/her possession with the intent to use it as drug paraphernalia.
  2. Defendant had knowledge of the presence of the drug paraphernalia.

‘Paraphernalia’ means all equipment, products, and materials of any kind which are used, intended for use, or designed to use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, concealing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance.


50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


To prove Perjury the following elements must be proven:

  1. The person took an oath to tell the truth.
  2. While under oath the person made a false statement that he/she DID NOT believe to be true.

Perjury can also occur by contradictory statements, as follows:

While under oath a person made statements which are contradictory.   Both statements were made knowingly and intentionally.

MxDnDcp7TuChwQ9W1RAkVQ_thumb_27e8-300x187Money Laundering in the High-End Super-Rich Luxury Home Market

In Miami and New York City, federal anti-money laundering agencies have launched a major effort to end buying high end housing with laundered money.  These are apartments in multi-million-dollar condominiums, waterfront high end homes in Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Los Angeles and D.C.  The Task Force is now operating full steam!  Take note that there are Federal Grand Juries actively investigating money laundering in New York and Florida.   Government money laundering federal prosecutors have begun a campaign to take down lawyers and real estate agents who facilitate these money laundering transactions.  How?  First there now is a push to emphasize the “know your client” rule.  The American Bar Association has published an attorney’s best practices pamphlet http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/uncategorized/GAO/2014oct_abaguide_preventingmoneylaundering.authcheckdam.pdf which is a must-read for lawyers in New York, Miami, and now Boca Raton Florida who have clients from outside the U.S. who purchase expensive homes with cash.   “Know Your Client” means… the true beneficial party must be known by his or her government issued identifier.  Identifiers are tax identification number(s).   For U.S. citizens? — a social security number.  For non-U.S. nationals?  –Their citizen identification is now required: passports are acceptable citizen identifiers.  A Beneficial Owner, or true equity-owner- person, is a living human being.  Best practices are to not accept transactions where the buyer is a business or a partnership or an entity: that is no longer good enough to shield you from a major problem.  You should (read that must) know the name of a living, breathing person.  It’s best to actually have personal contact with the beneficial owner(s).  If you don’t , and the government looks at the transaction and begins a money laundering investigation you (Real Estate broker or salesman, or Mr. or Ms. Attorney), will have a visitor from the Treasury Department, or the FBI and then it’s off into a major kettle of woes.  First thing is hiring your friendly federal criminal defense attorney.  Or responding to a Grand Jury subpoena.  Or a meet with the FBI investigator, or the U.S.  Attorney’s case agent.  It gets worse.  Think about the Bar, or your practice partners, or your clients who read about you being indicted in federal court on a wire fraud, or money laundering charge.  https://www.southfloridacriminaldefenselawyerblog.com/

Is it worth the aggravation to explain to your golfing buddies in Boca Raton about your miseries?  How about your friends in Miami who thought you were at the top of your game and now you’re playing hardball with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York.  So, what to do?  Here’s a few things to do:

  1. Remember that 78% of all real estate transactions in Miami and Boca Raton require compliance with the Bank Secrecy Act.  https://www.fdic.gov/regulations/safety/manual/section8-1.pdf

If you’re not familiar with it then call your malpractice underwriter and get the protocol for a closing.

  1. Learn and learn well, that starting today you have to (must) monitor, identify, know and name all parties to the transaction. Find and identify (with numerical identifiers) the true beneficial persons of interest: the buyer who walks and talks and will live in the five-million-dollar waterfront townhouse in Palm Beach.
  2. Go online and read the first page of the U.S. Treasury’s Department of Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).  https://www.fincen.gov/
  3. Or call your federal criminal defense lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, or Miami, or New York. Don’t be bashful it’s a call that can save you money and maybe your license!
  4. Again, go online and read about Suspicious Activity Reports (SAR’s) what they are and how attorneys and real estate agents and brokers can be tagged for not making a SAR report.
  5. Refamiliarize yourself with the definition of Willful Blindness.
  6. Go online to the website of the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS) or go online to find the local Chapter of ACAMS and call one of the names on the registry of members.
  7. Ask a banker for a contact in their internal Anti Money Laundering Compliance department.


50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


Resisting, obstructing, or opposing any officer in the execution of any legal duty.

The crime of Obstructing Justice includes:

  • Contempt
  • Escape
  • Perjury
  • Resisting or Obstructing an Officer
  • Retaliation against a witness
  • Tampering or fabricating evidence
  • Tampering with witnesses



50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


Causing damage to the property of another, willfully and maliciously.

‘Maliciously’ means wrongfully, intentionally, without legal justification or excuse and with the knowledge that the injury or damage will or may be caused to another person or the property of another person.

‘Willfully’ means intentionally, knowingly, and purposefully.


50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


The intentional infliction of physical or mental injury, upon a child.

Or, any intentional act that could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child.

Anyone who actively encourages another to commit an act of child abuse is guilty of child abuse.

A child is a person under the age of 18.


50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


Possession of any image depicting a minor engaged in sexual conduct.

In most states each image is an additional count. Ten photos (electronic images) can become ten individual counts of child pornography.













50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


Taking a motor vehicle from the custody of another person by force, violence or assault or putting in fear.

The taking must be with the intent to temporarily or permanently deprive the victim of their right to use or possess the motor vehicle.


50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


To corruptly give, offer, or promise to any public servant any pecuniary or other benefit with the intent to influence the performance of any act within the discretion or power of the public servant.

The state must prove:

  1. The defendant directly or indirectly gave or offered something of value to a public official.
  2. The defendant did so knowingly and corruptly, with the intent to influence an official act.



50 ‘most charged’ crimes defined


The elements are:

  1. Defendant was engaged in the business or profession of gambling.
  2. While so engaged he/she took or received a bet or wager.
  3. The bet or wager was upon the result of any trial or contest, or skill, speed, power or endurance of human, beast, fowl, motor vehicle or mechanical apparatus,  or upon the result of any change, casualty, unknown, or contingent event.


Money Laundering “Red Flags”

Questions to ask and

Things to be alert and mindful of….

  • Beneficial owners are in the “background” and you are, or should be, aware
  • Buyer and property are a mis-match
  • Buyer’s agent responses do not meet your due diligence requirements
  • Buyer’s income is inadequate to pay an 80% financed deal
  • Cash Deal? (remember: if there is a mortgage the lender always asks for a AML letter)
  • Client asks to use a Third Person nominee
  • Client is vague and reluctant to reveal the “person of interest” in the transaction
  • Deposits come from more than three banks
  • Income sources go back less than three years
  • Know Your Client: it’s the law!
  • Money Broker is involved
  • Money coming in from three sources and/or payment amounts (in dollars) are similar
  • Money instruments are used for any cost or payment
  • Non customary agents, payees, or persons appear on or at the closing
  • Notarized documents are not U.S.A. in origin
  • Off record payments or things of value are exchanged between parties
  • Payments of any kind are from more than three individuals or sources
  • Purchase is made without viewing the property or without inspection
  • Re-sold at the closing
  • Residential property is titled in a third person party
  • Rushed purchases or rushed sales
  • Sale price is high or low by a significant amount or percentage
  • SAR? Know what it is and who can and does make them…
  • Structuring? Be familiar with what structuring can look like
  • Third party names appear on monetary instruments
  • Transaction costs are unusual and the buyer doesn’t care
  • Trust but verify
  • Trust is the buyer and the Trustee is a non-U.S.A. resident
  • Vague or minimal information about a party participating in the transaction
  • Willful Blindness? Know what it is…..
  • Witnesses on documents are not U.S.A. residents