New York Penal Law § 470.05: Money laundering in the fourth degree

In New York the steps that you take in order to hide criminal activity can amount to a crime. One such crime is called money laundering. Money laundering involves transforming financial proceeds from criminal activity into what appears to be legally obtained funds. There are 8 money laundering offenses in the New York criminal code: money laundering in the first, second, third and fourth degrees, and money laundering in support of terrorism in the first, second, third and fourth degrees. The specific crime that you will face depends on the amount of money involved and the purpose for the money laundering. Under New York Penal Law § 470.05 you could be prosecuted for money laundering in the fourth degree if you:

  1. Know that a financial transaction represents the proceeds of criminal conduct and you:
    1. Conduct at least one financial transaction with intent to carry on the criminal conduct or with intent to violate federal tax law,
    2. Conduct at least one financial transaction knowing that it was designed to hide the nature, location or control of the criminal conduct
    3. Conduct at least one financial transaction that is designed to avoid required transaction reporting and the amount of the transaction or transactions exceeds $5000
  2. Know that at least one money instrument represents the proceeds of criminal conduct and you transport the money instrument with intent to:
    1. Promote carrying on the criminal conduct
    2. Hide the nature, location or control of the criminal conduct
    3. Avoid transaction reporting and the amount of the money instrument or instruments exceeds $10,000.
  3. Conduct at least one financial transaction that:
    1. Involves property that is the proceeds of criminal conduct or property that was used to conduct or facilitate criminal conduct with intent to promote that conduct, hide the nature, location or control of the conduct or avoid transaction reporting and the transaction or transactions exceeds $10,000.
Example

After a long day at work John takes the short walk from his business to his bank carrying the day's deposits. However, Jack robs John at gunpoint, stealing over $10,000 in cash. In order to avoid raising suspicions from his bank instead of depositing the entire amount in his bank account at once, he opened 4 new back accounts and deposited part of the money in each of the accounts. Jack could be prosecuted for money laundering. He committed the crime of robbery and then tried to conceal his crime by making multiple bank transactions using the proceeds from his criminal conduct.

Related Offenses
  1. Money laundering in support of terrorism in the fourth degree: New York Penal Code § 470.21
Defenses

In order for you to be convicted of money laundering in the fourth degree, the prosecutor must prove that you had the intent to launder money. If you can show that you did not know that the money was derived from criminal conduct, then you would not have had requisite intent.

Sentence

Money laundering in the fourth degree is a class E felony. If you are convicted of this crime your sentence may include up to 4 years in prison, 5 years of probation, and a substantial fine.

New York Penal Law § 470.05: Money laundering in the fourth degree

A person is guilty of money laundering in the fourth degree when:

  1. Knowing that the property involved in one or more financial transactions represents the proceeds of criminal conduct: (a) he or she conducts one or more such financial transactions which in fact involve the proceeds of specified criminal conduct: (i) With intent to: (A) promote the carrying on of criminal conduct; or (B) engage in conduct constituting a felony as set forth in section eighteen hundred three, eighteen hundred four, eighteen hundred five, or eighteen hundred six of the tax law; or (ii) Knowing that the transaction or transactions in whole or in part are designed to: (A) conceal or disguise the nature, the location, the source, the ownership or the control of the proceeds of criminal conduct; or (B) avoid any transaction reporting requirement imposed by law; and (b) The total value of the property involved in such financial transaction or transactions exceeds five thousand dollars; or

  2. Knowing that one or more monetary instruments represents the proceeds of criminal conduct: (a) he or she transports, transmits, or transfers on one or more occasions, monetary instruments which in fact represent the proceeds of specified criminal conduct: (i) With intent to promote the carrying on of criminal conduct; or (ii) Knowing that such transportation, transmittal, or transfer is designed in whole or in part to: (A) conceal or disguise the nature, the location, the source, the ownership, or the control of the proceeds of criminal conduct; or (B) avoid any transaction reporting requirement imposed by law; and (b) The total value of such monetary instrument or instruments exceeds ten thousand dollars; or

  3. He or she conducts one or more financial transactions: (a) involving property represented to be the proceeds of specified criminal conduct, or represented to be property used to conduct or facilitate specified criminal conduct, with intent to: (i) promote the carrying on of specified criminal conduct; or (ii) conceal or disguise the nature, the location, the source, the ownership or the control of property believed to be the proceeds of specified criminal conduct; or (iii) avoid any transaction reporting requirement imposed by law; and (b) the total value of the property involved in such financial transaction or transactions exceeds ten thousand dollars.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you or someone you love has been charged with money laundering in the fourth degree, or is under investigation for money laundering, it is critical that to meet with someone who has experience. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with money laundering, conspiracy, criminal facilitation, enterprise corruption, and other serious crimes. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of larceny in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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