Money Laundering Mitigation in Mansfield
Advice given by Mansfield solicitor Tim Haines in a money laundering case was recently remarked upon by the District Judge passing sentence. Particularly, the Judge made it clear that he had been able to avoid imposing an immediate prison sentence because Tim’s client had accepted his sensible and proper advice on plea and offence category.
The case involved an allegation of money laundering with a value a little over £15 000. Money had come into our client’s account that were the result of fraudulent transfers from two different company accounts. The money had then been withdrawn and used to buy Euros which were then collected by a courier. A percentage of this money was said to have been retained as a reward.
Money laundering is viewed as serious by the courts as it often a crucial part of many serious criminal offences. Many cases are dealt with before the Crown Court and often result in a prison sentence of many months.
Tim’s client was the only person arrested as a result of the investigation. Others involved had gone to ground. The preparation of the case involved the careful consideration of the paper trail in the case. This showed that there was a strong case against our client. Upon receiving that advice she accepted she would be pleading guilty to the offence.
Thereafter, all efforts were directed to ensuring that the case was placed in the correct category of the sentencing guidelines which can be found here:
Although the value placed the offending in a less serious category, the sentence would depend upon the level of involvement in the offence, or culpability.
For example, as the client had full control of the bank accounts, withdrew the money, converted it into Euros and arranged for its collection, and received a percentage for that service it could have been said that her involvement amounted to ‘medium culpability’ which would have meant that the case was likely to have been sent to the Crown Court for sentence, with a starting point of 18 months immediate custody.
Through careful preparation and considered advocacy, Tim was able to persuade the Judge that his client involvement was one of ‘lesser culpability’. This, in combination with the arguments put forward in mitigation, meant that the Judge was able to sentence her to a short suspended sentence with unpaid work and a small amount of compensation.
This type of case demonstrates the benefits of instructing Tim to deal with your case. His careful advice will always start with a detailed analysis of the case that you face, followed by realistic advice as to any strengths and weaknesses.
Tim will then spend the time necessary seeking your account of the incident, providing you full advice as to whether you have an arguable defence, and give you sensible advice as to the likely outcome of either a trial or sentence.