Schwartz & Powell

Ventura White Collar Crime and Fraud: What Was I Thinking?

by Steven D. Powell Attorney at Law


white collarSchwartz & Powell defends many Ventura fraud criminal cases.  We have a long and successful history as Ventura’s preeminent criminal defense lawyers.  But we also represent defendants and plaintiffs in civil cases for money damages arising from allegations of fraud and sharp dealing.

Schwartz & Powell  understands not everyone accused of fraud is guilty of any crime.  Fraud is a subspecies of theft and resulting financial loss, usually in the context of some form of investment or business setting.  But financial loss alone does not a fraud or theft make.  Both fraud and theft ordinarily require either a conscious or reckless disregard for truth about the deal or an actual intent to pull a fast one over on a person and steal  money or property.  There are legitimate investment and business deals that fail with no fraud or theft involved.  The criminal law doesn’t punish every loss, only when the loss is caused by fraud, such a lying to the alleged victim, or just outright theft of the investment or business opportunity.

Civil law, on the other hand, provides remedies to one who has lost money or property to another based, for example,  on that person’s failure to register to sell investments, which may or may not in context be a crime also, or failed to understand the risks and failed adequately but innocently to explain those risks to investors, which in  and of itself probably would not be a crime but would be a civil law case for money  damages.  Civil law provides remedies to somebody whose co owners of a business, for example, have frittered away company assets with good intent but bad judgment, not necessarily a crime, but certainly  a matter civil law recognizes as actionable. 

Criminal and civil law ideas overlap one another but are not usually identical

At Schwartz & Powell we understand this and apply our knowledge to defend those accused individually or as a company or other organization  both of theft of money or business assets or trade secrets or the multitude of other theft charges that the prosecution may file against an individual or business arising from financial dealings and financial loss.  We defend these folks both in criminal court when the State wants to put our clients in jail and in  civil court when an aggrieved investor or co owner cries foul and asks for money damages.

But, so long as we have no conflicts of interest between the claimant and the accused, we can apply that same knowledge of fraud and theft law derived from defending to representing plaintiffs who have been righteously clipped by unscrupulous and shadowy business practices  amounting to theft or fraud.  If we can intervene quickly into the controversy, we are able in many instances to recover our client’s money  and make them whole upon demand.  On other occasions we need litigate our client’s entitlement to recovery through the civil court process. 

We are Ventura criminal defense lawyers but we also  have the capacity to face or bring such cases in civil court, too.   On Monday morning we can defend a Ventura theft/fraud civil case or act for the plaintiff in recovering damages in civil court and on the same afternoon defend another client in criminal court on similar but slightly different allegations of misconduct. 

There is a fine line between criminal culpability and civil liability in all theft related charges and we know where that line is.  If you are accused or are being investigated by law enforcement for any Ventura theft case arising from business or investment financial dealings, everybody knows to call Schwartz & Powell.  Schwartz & Powell is the law firm to go to whenever white collar crime charges loom on the horizon. 

We represent individuals in civil court on charges of misconduct in financial matters, representing both plaintiffs and defendants.   If you are accused of financial misconduct resulting in financial loss you need Schwartz & Powell’s services and vigorous representation.  If you have been truly victimized by a financial scheme resulting in a substantial loss, you need Schwartz & Powell’s services.  In either instance, just don’t sit there fretting “What was I thinking?”   You need the services of Schwartz & Powell’s first rate lawyers  Remember that Experience matters.