As a financial adviser, being charged with fraud can be career-ending. Integrity and reputation are the hallmarks of the financial industry, and facing any white collar crimes could cast aspersions on your ability to deliver. In addition, a conviction could mean the suspension of your license.
Therefore, it is vital to have a sound defense strategy before going against the charges against you. Some of the most common defenses are outlined below.
Lack of intent
Intent to commit a crime is a key factor in proving fraud. The prosecution must prove that your actions or inactions were intended to mislead or deceive the other party and benefit you. If you had no knowledge of the crime or had no intention or ill-will, then you cannot be construed to be fraudulent.
Entrapment or coercion
Entrapment occurs when law enforcement, through undue tactics, induces you to commit a crime that you would have otherwise not have committed. If that is the case for you, then you may be a victim of entrapment. It is a behavior largely frowned upon in judicial circles since it is considered an abuse of the legal system. Coercion happens when you are forced to act against your will or face harm or other negative consequences.
Insufficient evidence by the prosecution
Rather than prove your innocence, you can choose not to contest the charges you are facing. That way, the prosecution will bear the burden of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Sometimes, the evidence may not be sufficient to secure a conviction, or there may be loopholes that you can exploit.
Understand your legal rights
Being aware of your legal rights throughout your trial is critical in securing your freedom. For instance, there is a legal deadline beyond which criminal fraud charges cannot be preferred against you.
A successful defense of your case pegs on your knowledge of these and other aspects of the law.