The commodities and securities market is a big earner for the US economy. This has also created numerous opportunities for fraud, misrepresentation, and abuse. These cases are on the rise, and the CFTC has intensified their investigations and prosecutions. If you have been charged with a commodities trading offense, you need to consult with a defense lawyer immediately.
CFTC Commodity Charges Investigations
CFTC officers are very aggressive on crimes related to commodities trading. These officers have close networks with the Department of Justice, FBI, and the Attorney’s office. If you are under investigation, then there is a high chance that you may face criminal charges. The CFTC is mandated with the task of enforcing the laws made by the Commodities Exchange Act. They handle all investigations that pertain to the illegal trade of futures, swaps, and commodities. The CFTC also relies on information given by the public, private businesses, and individuals. Its reach also extends to foreign governments. They also have extensive resources and networks. This is potentially why you should not take an investigation into your trading activities lightly. It is imperative that you seek advice from an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
Are You Being Investigated by the CFTC?
If you are being investigated on commodities fraud charge or other crimes, you need to act promptly. Time is of the essence in such cases. That’s not all. You also need to pay close attention to details. It is easy for a simple inquiry on your activities to turn into a criminal investigation if you do not handle the situation wisely.
For starters, unless you get a subpoena to give evidence or testify, you should not speak to the prosecutor or federal investigator without your lawyer. To prove white collar crimes, such as commodities fraud, there is a lot of paperwork involved. The prosecutor needs paper evidence to make a case. You are not required to hand over any documentation unless there is a warrant to that effect.
If you receive a subpoena or a warrant to share any information or documents, you need to present this to your defense lawyer. The warrant should be specific, and you should not submit any papers that are not stated in the court document. There are parameters to every request. It is why you need a lawyer to guide you.
For a successful defense, you need to ensure that you consult with a lawyer immediately. The chances are that the investigators have had more time to gather incriminating evidence against you. The defense lawyer needs ample time to prepare a defense that counters what the prosecution may present. You should not hesitate to bring a lawyer on board once you receive a notice of investigation from the CFTC.
Penalties for Commodity Trading Charges Offenses
Several penalties exist for people who have been convicted for commodities trading fraud. In such cases, the penalties given revolve around finances. If found guilty of benefiting from insider trading, then the fine amount set can even be twice the amount you received. There are punitive penalties that apply. These always result in huge fines. The convicted person can lose their trading license. One can also be barred from holding the position of a director in a company.
While most cases are settled through arbitration, if you are found liable for crimes that involve huge amounts, the CFTC can take the charges to a criminal court. Once this happens, the defendant can face a long prison sentence. There has been a rise in commodities fraud, as such, the CFTC is under immense pressure to bring these offenders to book. This means that they will use all measures to ensure that they prosecute as many people as they can.
Get Help From a Fraud Defense Lawyer
The CFTC is known to be aggressive and thorough in their investigations. As a brokerage firm, you could find yourself culpable due to the actions of one individual. These charges should not be taken lightly. If prosecuted, the image of your investment firm is tainted. You may never recover from negative publicity, and you will most likely lose both existing and potential clients. You cannot afford to live the matter to chance. Take a proactive measure by getting in touch with a fraud defense attorney.
People frequently think that those who commit white collar crimes are not really doing anybody any harm. They make this wrong assumption because they don’t make the connection between someone doing something in a financial transaction and other parties getting harmed by that at the other end of the transaction. It is difficult to see the linkage, but it really is there.
What Are Commodities Charges?
Simply put, a commodities crime charge is when someone attempts to buy or sell a commodity through illegal means. This may mean that they have obtained the commodity through theft or deception. It may also mean that they are attempting to sell the commodity outside of the normal functions of the marketplace. One final situation may be when an individual attempts to sell a commodity with insider information that they ought not be in possession of.
A commodities crime is a very serious offense with potentially life-altering penalties attached to it. It is certainly something to take incredibly seriously.
Who Charges A Person With A Commodities Charge?
This type of crime is not as easy to identify as some others. After all, you don’t see a person running away from the scene of the crime or anything like that. It is such a complex crime that it can months or even years to charge one individual with a single offense.
A great deal of investigation goes into every commodities charge that is brought before any court in the land. The group that is tasked with doing these investigations is a governmental organization known as the CFTC. This stands for the commodities and futures trading commission. They get to decide who gets charged and who doesn’t per the way that the laws are written.
The CFTC conducts routine audits as well of anyone who engages in the commodities and futures markets. This means that someone who is currently under investigation by the CFTC may not have actually done anything wrong at all. However, the group has to take all necessary steps to make sure they investigate all potential issues to make sure everyone is operating with the same information.
What Kind Of Penalties Can A Person Face?
These charges are no joke, and someone who is convicted of a commodities trading charge may find themselves facing both criminal and civil charges as well. It is something that could cause them to lose their regulatory licenses to trade commodities and futures going forward. That is why so many get so jumpy when the subject matter comes up in the first place. They know how much is at stake when they are being investigated.
It is recommended that anyone who is being looked at or even charged with a commodities trading crime get an attorney who specializes in this area as quickly as possible. It doesn’t matter that you don’t think that you have done anything wrong. The most important thing is to get an advocate who can make that case forcefully for you. Such a person has the training and experience necessary to make your case.
Defending oneself in a complex case like this is no simple matter. These kinds of things are best left to the professionals.
You are right to think of yourself and your reputation when so much is on the line like this. You never know what it might look like if you are convicted of a serious commodities charge, but you know that it is not going to look very good. You can prevent this from taking place to being with by getting a capable attorney who can defend you.
The press surrounding the case can say whatever they like about you, but you have every right to defend yourself and to put up a case for why you did not commit the crimes that you are charged with. It is entirely possible that regulators simply got things wrong in your case. They can get overly zealous at times and end up charging people who did not deserve it. Perhaps that is what happened in your case. If so, then you need to get out of this jam as quickly as humanly possible.
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