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Matthew A. Radefeld and Daniel A. Juengel

Types of white-collar crimes

On Behalf of | May 24, 2022 | Criminal Law |

A white-collar crime is a nonviolent crime often committed by government officials and corporations for financial gain. Commonly characterized by concealment, deceit, and trust violation, the motive behind this crime is to secure a personal or business advantage and obtain or prevent the loss of money, property, or other services. Advancement in technology and financial products has contributed to white-collar crimes, taking a heavy toll on society. Below are some of the most typical types of white-collar crimes.

Money laundering

Money laundering is taking cash acquired from illegal transactions, like drug trafficking and disguising it through legal business activities. Money laundering enables white-collar criminals to accumulate and hide wealth, evade payment of taxes, and further expand criminal activities through their funding and reinvestments. Crimes involving money laundering are often complex and large-scale, requiring collaboration and coordination on every level during an investigation process.

Health care fraud

This crime impacts all members of the healthcare community, raising premiums and increasing tax dollars. Health care fraud occurs when patients, medical providers, or any other party intentionally manipulates the system to acquire unlawful benefits and compensation. Creating and using fake prescriptions for medication is a serious crime and can cause unwanted medical complications.


This white-collar crime involves the intentional misappropriation of funds, items, and assets entrusted to a person or entity. A typical example is when an employee steals from a business or diverts the company’s funds into a personal account. Failure to safeguard and adequately manage property and assets can attract criminal charges if found guilty.


Bribery is a type of white-collar crime in which favor or something valuable is offered by an individual or an organization in an attempt to sway or change decisions, views, and opinions. Mainly, this act alters the legal procedure of doing things. One example is when a manufacturing company offers a bribe to a purchasing supplier, even when the goods are substandard or don’t meet quality requirements. Anyone offering or receiving a bribe is liable for severe fines or jail time.

Counterfeiting currency

This white-collar crime is the act of altering genuine currency to manufacture fake money. In the past, this crime was easy to commit when counterfeiting was hard to control. Nowadays, despite advancements in detection techniques, counterfeit money is created with high-resolution printers, which has made it even easier to forge fake currencies. This is a serious crime that can attract heavy fines or prison time of up to 10 years.