Racketeering is not an isolated crime in and of itself. Rather, it is an umbrella term for a pattern of criminal activity conducted by a group of individuals. In other words, it refers to “organized crime” or “mob activity.” Read on to discover the possible consequences of racketeering and how a seasoned Kaufman County, Texas criminal defense lawyer at Harrell & Paulson, LLP can step in.
What Is the Federal RICO Act?
In its simplest terms, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act is a federal law that enforces extensive criminal penalties and a civil cause of action for unlawful activities performed by criminal organizations. The RICO Act acknowledges 35 crimes, and a few are named below:
With that being said, these aforementioned crimes must be performed at least twice within 10 years to constitute racketeering activity under the RICO Act.
What Are the Potential Penalties for Racketeering in The State of Texas?
Due to the RICO Act, you may be charged federally if you are found guilty of racketeering. If you are convicted in federal court, then you may be facing a prison sentence of up to 20 years or a fine of up to $250,000, or both. The severity of these consequences may be dependent on the severity of the racketeering activity at hand.
And if you are convicted in a Texas criminal court, you may be facing the following consequences:
A prison sentence of up to 20 years.
A fine of up to $250,000.
A seizure of any money or property obtained as a result of the racketeering activity.
A seizure of any securities obtained or used to conduct the racketeering activity.
A mandatory restitution order to victims.
Other civil remedies:
A mandatory order to divest of any interest in an enterprise.
A mandatory order to restrict the future activities or investments in an enterprise.
A mandatory order to dissolute or reorganize an enterprise.
A mandatory order to suspend or revoke a license, permit, or approval previously granted by an enterprise.
You must understand that, in addition to facing consequences for your racketeering activity, you may be subject to penalties for the criminal offense in which you committed. For example, if you are found guilty of aggravated robbery in the state of Texas, you may be up against a felony charge for robbery on top of your racketeering charge. This means that, instead of up to 20 years in prison, this first-degree felony for organized crime may have you sentenced to life in prison.
For these reasons alone, you must not hesitate and reach out to a competent Kaufman County, Texas criminal defense lawyer as soon as you possibly can. Our team at Harrell & Paulson, LLP will be awaiting your phone call.