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Greater New Orleans Area Criminal Law Blog

Are you an accomplice to white collar crime?

You didn't commit a white collar crime yourself, but you're still facing criminal charges. The authorities claim you were an accomplice. What does it mean for your future and what options do you have?

First of all, you should know that you can face charges as an accomplice, even if you didn't technically commit the crime. For instance, perhaps you stayed late after work so that you could open the door for a co-worker, who then embezzled money from the company. You didn't see the money or take it yourself, but your co-worker gets arrested and tells the police you knew what was happening. You may be an accomplice.

Why do people suffer wrongful convictions?

A wrongful conviction is one of the most tragic things that can happen in the criminal justice system. Putting a person in jail, sometimes for decades, essentially steals their life away from them. Even if they get released later on, they can never get that time back.

Since DNA evidence entered the picture, many convictions have been overturned. It can offer solid proof that someone else committed the crime, and it can cast doubt on a jury's decisions made without this evidence. In some cases, DNA evidence is now being processed for cases that happened years ago, before it was even an option.

DWI: The difference between a first, second and third offense

Louisiana takes drinking and driving seriously, which is why the difference in penalties between a first, second and third offense are drastic.

2.5 percent of Louisiana residents report driving after drinking in excess, compared to the 1.9 percent national average. If the police pull you over for driving under the influence and you have a previous DUI conviction on your record, what penalties will you face?

Teens, anger and the odds of violent crime

Violent crimes like assault and battery come with very serious ramifications. They can be incredibly detrimental for teenagers and other young people, who can get a criminal record that follows them around for life.

Unfortunately, these young people may also be more likely to engage in violent behavior because they deal with anger issues, faulty thinking and impulsive decision-making. In the heat of the moment, a teen may do something that he or she will regret for years to come, all without really thinking it through. Even without malicious intent, this can lead to serious charges.

Addiction is a medical disorder

The public perception of those who are addicted to illegal drugs is often very negative. It is almost as if people do not understand that addiction is an illness.

Those who suffer from it often have no control over their actions or other conditions that they develop as a result. Drug addiction can lead to:

  • Feelings of depression
  • Manic episodes
  • Heart attacks
  • Strokes
  • Violent fantasies
  • Organ failure

Interesting statistics about DNA exonerations

Did you know that 130 people in the United States have been wrongfully convicted of murder and later exonerated by DNA evidence? These people were accused of violent crimes that they never committed, they had to serve time before they eventually got free.

Of course, that makes you wonder just how many people were wrongfully convicted before DNA evidence. How many wrongful convictions were never overturned because the right DNA evidence has never been found? How long are the sentences these people serve? Who bears this terrible burden?

2 key elements of tax fraud that the IRS looks for

The U.S. government takes taxes very seriously, and the potential penalties for committing fraud are significant. As complex as taxes are, there is an obligation to navigate the system properly at all times. A willful intent to do anything else may constitute fraud and lead to legal charges.

There are two key things that an IRS compliance employee is going to look for in a fraud investigation. Both things must be shown for it to really be a fraud case. They are:

  • That you deliberately intended to avoid paying all the taxes that were due, and that you still owe that additional money as a result.
  • That you willfully sent in inaccurate paperwork or made inaccurate statements in an attempt to keep from paying this money.

Restrictions for the hardship license in Louisiana

One of the biggest inconveniences that comes with charges of DWI is a suspension of your driving privileges. A first offense in the Bayou State alone results in a one-year license suspension, and it increases with subsequent convictions. You might not have access to a vehicle for a while, so how are you supposed to go to necessary places like work or school?

Thankfully, the state does allow you to apply for a hardship license. This license will only allow you to drive to necessary locations such as your college, workplace, grocery store or a substance abuse program ordered by the court. Before you think about getting one, you need to know more about the application process and what can happen if you violate the conditions.

When do marijuana charges become felonies in Louisiana?

Minor marijuana crimes, such as possession of 14 grams or less, come with equally minor legal ramifications. In Louisiana, a first offense conviction for that type of possession carries a maximum $300 fine and a maximum of 15 days in jail. The state also has medical marijuana laws, so it is possible to use the drug legally under the right circumstances.

When do the charges get more serious? When could you be facing a felony?

Understanding five common drunk driving defense strategies

You are facing criminal charges for drunk driving, and you feel terrified. You never thought that you would end up in this position—all you wanted to do was drive from one location to the next after having a few drinks. You may believe that a criminal conviction for DUI or DWI is inevitable. Fortunately, this is far from true.

Many people believe that if they face criminal charges for drunk driving, the case is open and shut: A police officer gave them a breathalyzer, they blew a blood alcohol concentration over the legal limit and they will now be convicted of DUI or DWI. However, there is no such thing as an open-and-shut case, and there are many options for putting up a strong defense against these charges.

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