What Are the 3 Key Elements of White-Collar Crimes?

White Collar Crime

When thinking about white-collar crimes, violent acts cross your mind. White-collar crimes can result in severe penalties. In a typical day, you might come across several criminal offenses. Knowing the difference between white-collar crimes and other criminal offenses can be challenging. That is why you need to understand the 3 critical elements of white-collar crime. If you are charged with a white collar crime, you need to speak with a white collar crime attorney. Call our office at (317) 458-9911 for help right away.

While several crimes connect, white-collar crimes are different. In a workplace setting, many factors make you or your colleagues susceptible to white-collar crimes. But first, what is white-collar crime?

White-collar crimes are crimes arising during your official duties. In other words, they occur during employment. The person must be holding a particular occupation. The position must play a significant role in the community and a central role in the commission of the crime.

For instance, in the Pensacola News Journal, a stockbroker defrauded a client. The stockbroker in Pensacola, Florida, who, among other offenses, demanded $1 billion from a client for investment. Instead of investing the cash, he used all the money on himself.

The stockbroker went ahead to threaten the client. While issuing a threat, he tried to lure his brother into destroying any evidence relating to the case. The court found him guilty of nine felony charges. These included money laundering, grand theft, racketeering, and criminal solicitations.

The result was 20 years imprisonment plus a $1 million restitution payment. White-collar criminals` backgrounds appear to be consistent. Most of them are married, middle-class people with some level of high education. They commit white-collar crimes in their late thirties through forties.

In all instances, they don’t seem to have a reason for committing the crime. These crimes arise out of the convenience theory. It’s a combination of willingness, opportunity, and motive.

People commit white-collar crimes for financial gain. White-collar crimes occur during different opportunities related to deviant behavior. So what are the 3 primary elements of white-collar crimes?


With white-collar crimes, the defendant must exhibit the willingness to commit the crime. It must be an intentional wrongful act. Most often, white-collar crimes are committed against the government.

The government represents the plaintiff. During a trial, the government must prove the defendant’s full guilt. They must illustrate the defendant’s intention beyond a reasonable doubt. The defendant must also build a case depicting a solid character. If possible, he or she can poke holes in the government’s case.

Disguise Or Concealment

The defendant must have covered up their criminal activity. While dealing with a white-collar crime, the plaintiff must prove there was an element of disguise. It will indicate the defendant’s intention to commit the offense.


The defendant must be aware that he committed a white-collar crime. Committing a crime without knowledge means there was no intention. With white-collar crimes, the plaintiff must prove the defendant’s awareness while committing the crime. The evidence set is beyond a reasonable doubt.

The plaintiff must indicate his or her reliance on the defendant’s actions. And during the process, the plaintiff must show the defendant had full control of the situation.

White-collar criminals are aware of their actions months before the crime. While it makes them apprehensive about the future, they also prepare a strong defense to protect their rights and freedom. White-collar crimes are nonviolent crimes. But they attract severe penalties.

The degree of penalties associating with white-collar crimes will depend on the act. A misdemeanor may incur a short jail sentence or fine. A felony will lead to lengthy jail terms and high fines. With white-collar crimes, it’s advisable to get a qualified attorney for your case.