Under the United States federal law, the Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organizations Act (more commonly known as RICO) is used to help law enforcement close a loophole that was perceived to allow leaders of large crime organizations to get away from conviction. Racketeering refers to those who partake in a racket or an illegal business. This can mean anything from partaking in an illegal lottery to
embezzlement, terrorism, money laundering or other.
The RICO Act was passed in October of 1970 and allowed for law enforcement to charge an entire group with racketeering – its original purpose was to help in the prosecution of the Mafia. Since its inception, however, it has spread to incorporate many different charges. Essentially, anyone who can be proven to be part of an organization can be charged with the crimes committed by the group – this allowed for the leaders of a group to be charged with crimes that they ordered others to commit, but they themselves had no partake in carrying out.
There are many different famous cases involving RICO, some of which involved the following:
- Hells Angels Motorcycle Club;
- Key West Police Department;
- Major League Baseball;
- National Organization for Women; and
- Winter Hill Gang;
If you have recently been criminally charged with a RICO crime, you do not have the luxury of wasting your time. You need to be confident that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side that you can trust to go the distance in their efforts to defend your best interests. Contact a Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer from Okabe and Haushalter today and you will be able to rest easier knowing that we will stop at nothing in our efforts to help you defend your freedom. We know what is on the line and will do everything that we can to allow you to defend your best interests.