Criminal defense lawyers in Michigan recognize money laundering as a viable criminal charge, and if found guilty, the conviction one may face is no laughing matter. In fact, if the government simply believes you are guilty of committing this crime, they may just step in without having all the pertinent information to prove their accusations, and hold you accountable for this offense they believe you allegedly committed. For one family-owned business, it was almost as if the government had a hand of its own and reached right into their bank account, seizing all of their hard-earned money.

The Economist provided coverage on a father and daughter, Terry Dehko and his daughter Sandy Thomas, who ran a grocery store in Fraser, Michigan. As many may be unaware, there are these underlying rules that exist in the world of business, and should the government feel as though you are trying to get over on them, they surely will make their thoughts known.

One rule of thumb criminal defense lawyers in Michigan want you to understand is that generally, a deposit of more than $10,000 is a red flag to the bank, and is usually reported to the Internal Revenue System (IRS). On the other hand, having a cash amount on hand of more than $10,000 is not covered by insurance companies in the event a theft occurs. Therefore, would you say it is wrong for this family-owned business to protect their profits by making frequent deposits in amounts under $10,000?

Apparently, as this Michigan family tried to play their cards right by continually making such deposits, they were unknowingly being targeted by the government, and not for their freshly baked breads. To the family’s surprise, without any sort of warning, the government went into their store account, which contained more than $35,000, seized their money, and were then accused of violating “federal money-laundering rules.” The rule they coincidentally were “breaking” was the fact that they were trying “to avoid the $10,000 threshold that triggers banks to report a transaction to the IRS.”

Basically, this family-run business was frowned upon for the mere fact that they were looking out for themselves and their livelihood by making frequent deposits to protect their funds in the event a robbery occurred. In return, they were being viewed as possibly committing money-laundering, trying to hide it by making small deposits on such a continual basis.

In a criminal case, generally the government will “confiscate assets after a conviction,” however, in this case, under “civil forfeiture”, they have the ability to take what they what immediately, and proceed with the questioning later.

It sounds as though this struggling family is in need of a reputable and knowledgeable Michigan criminal defense legal representative who can fight for their rights of being viewed as “innocent until proven guilty,” and regain that hard-earned money they worked so hard to make.