What is money laundering?

Money laundering is the act of concealing the financial proceeds from any illegal activity. It is specifically forbidden by the legal code of Louisiana. Stiff penalties have been set out for any individual convicted of violating this statute.

No person may conduct or participate in a monetary transaction that involves profits made from activity that they know to be illegal. Any felony or conspiracy to commit a felony is construed to be illegal activity under this law. The law may be a felony under Louisiana law or federal law, or it may be any crime that carries a punishment of at least a year in prison in any other state. Any financial transaction that is meant to conceal the illegal origin, ownership or control of the money is also against the law.

Every sort of monetary fund is covered by the money laundering statutes. Currency of any nation, foreign bank drafts, checks, money orders and investment securities are all prohibited from being used to conceal or obscure the nature of illegal proceeds. Further investment of the money is against the law as well.

Individuals who have been accused of white-collar crime such this should consider their legal defense. An attorney can provide representation to those who request it, appearing before the court to help guide the defendant to an accommodation with the law that minimizes the severity of the charges against them and mitigates the harshness of any ensuing legal penalties. Penalties for money laundering begin with six months imprisonment and $1,000 fine for laundering amounts less than $3,000. The consequences grow substantially more dire as the amounts laundered grow larger until they reach the maximum penalty of five to 99 years of hard labor and a fine of as much as $50,000.

Source: Louisiana State Legislature, "ยง230. Money laundering; transactions involving proceeds of criminal activity", November 11, 2014

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