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Understanding Federal Criminal Charges Against DC Corporations

Corporations are treated as individuals under the law and can, therefore, be charged with a federal crime. When a DC corporation is criminally charged, a significant criminal investigation usually comes first.

Understanding federal criminal charges against DC corporations and the investigations surrounding them could be crucial in maintaining your freedom and remaining protected from serious prosecution. Therefore, you might want to consider consulting with a seasoned federal defense lawyer.

Corporate Investigations

Usually, an extensive and lengthy internal and external investigation is conducted before the corporation is actually charged with a crime.

The Department of Justice takes these investigations seriously and investigates these cases thoroughly. Considering the possibility that a charge is issued, it is crucial to be thorough, careful, and cautious when responding to these types of investigations.

A corporation should have a team of lawyers to handle these investigations internally. The corporation needs to work closely with the team of lawyers to not alter, destroy, or otherwise change relevant evidence. Often, a preservation order is issued that puts a freeze on the alteration or destruction of any information once the corporation becomes aware of an investigation. For example, if the corporation has a policy of shredding documents periodically to make room in its offices, a preservation order stops that procedure.

Self-Reporting and Cooperating with Federal Investigators

In some cases, a corporation may self-report internal wrongdoing. Self-reporting depends on the context of an investigation. If an internal investigation is conducted and evidence of wrongdoing is found, the corporation may decide to self-report the wrongdoing in an effort to get ahead of an investigation and prevent corporate penalties such as fines. It is often a good idea for companies to self-report, depending on what is discovered when an internal investigation is conducted.

Depending on the investigation, it may also be beneficial to cooperate with authorities when an internal investigation reveals wrongdoing by an isolated individual. It is often to the benefit of the company to cooperate and identify what happened, who did it, and what steps the corporation took to remedy the situation.

Seeking a Lawyer

In the context of a corporate investigation, anyone involved should explore the possibility of retaining their own lawyer. Employees at a corporation should understand that the interests of a corporation or company often diverge from those of the individual employee.

The government undertakes investigations against corporations all the time and employ investigative techniques such as subpoenas, search warrants, interviews of witnesses, the use of confidential informants, et cetera, all of which could lead to an employee implicating themselves in a crime.

Common Corporate Crimes

The most common crimes investigated by federal prosecutors have to do with fraud. In some cases, corporations may be charged with cybercrimes or trade secret thefts. Potential violations of The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act are also investigated by the government regularly.

Corporate Criminal Liability

Corporate criminal liability is liability attributed to a corporation for a criminal act done by an individual with ties to that corporation. An internal or external law enforcement investigation determines whether a corporation has criminal liability for the action taken by executives, agents, or employees of the company.

An Agent of a Corporation

The term “agent” has a legal significance. An agent is someone who acts on behalf of a corporation and from whose actions the corporation enacts benefit. The corporation has liability for the actions of its agents and the potential benefits of the actions of the a corporate agency context.

How a Corporate Internal Investigations Lawyer Could Help

A corporate internal investigations lawyer participates in every step of the internal investigation from the investigation including interviewing witnesses, reviewing documents, and working to ensure that the company is not prosecuted. An attorney can help a business understand federal criminal charges against DC corporations and how these charges may affect employees and executives.

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