Falsifying Business Records
While not as commonly prosecuted as Forgery, Grand Larceny or Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument, Falsifying Business Records in the First and Second Degrees, New York Penal Law sections 175.10 and 175.05 respectively, are extremely serious offenses. In fact, New York criminal defense attorneys experienced in representing clients for Falsifying Business Records and other White Collar crimes can explain how easy it is for a savvy prosecutor to bump up a less serious crime into a felony case or find an otherwise insignificant act and develop a viable misdemeanor case.
Maybe you entered information incorrectly into a database at work. You deleted or changed some old documents related to accounts receivable. Even if it seemed somewhat insignificant in the scheme of your employment, you changed some numbers around on bills or receipts. Yes, you knew, or should have known, it was wrong, but you were going to rectify it as soon as you were able. Simply, you fell on hard times or had a momentary lapse of judgement. Before you could fix those errors, however, you found yourself in your employer’s office in Midtown Manhattan not merely facing termination, but the threat of an arrest by the New York City Police Department and prosecution by the New York County District Attorney’s Office. Whether you are arrested as soon as you are accused or you are the target of an open investigation by law enforcement, you should expect that if your employer, the police, a District Attorney or the Attorney General believe and can establish you had the intent to defraud, then an arrest may be only moments away.
- Falsifying Business Records in the Second Degree – NY Penal Law 175.05
- Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree – NY Penal Law 175.10
Like every other statute found in the New York Penal Law, the criminal consequences and penalties of a conviction for any degree of Falsifying Business Records – PL 175.05 and PL 175.10 – is significant ranging from probation and community service to fines and incarceration in prison. However, just like those same statutes, the legal language establishing the degrees of Falsifying Business Records have specifically defined elements and terms that not merely may but will have an impact on your case. Two of these words, “enterprise” and “business record,” for example, have specific meanings that you must discuss with your criminal defense lawyer. Equally important is the affirmative defense codified in the New York Penal Law whereby one is not guilty of this crime if one is an employee acting by order of a supervisor and is obtaining no benefit to alter the records in question. Because of your potential exposure to a felony or misdemeanor conviction based on what overall may be fairly insignificant conduct, it is critical to challenge, not merely the basis and probable cause of your arrest, legal foundation of an search by the police, and stamen you may have made, but every element Falsifying Business Records. Simply, you can not leave any proverbial stone unturned.
As New York white collar criminal defense lawyers and former Manhattan prosecutors who managed, investigated and prosecuted significant white collar schemes involving Falsifying Business Records, Forgery, Grand Larceny and Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument, the partners at Crotty Saland PC understand the gravity of these allegations and have the experience to ascertain and mount your defense.
For extensive information on New York White Collar crimes including Falsifying Business Records and each of the offenses addressed above, please review the New York White Collar Crime section of Crotty Saland PC’s website. Additional information, including legal decisions, criminal statutes and cases in the news, can be found on the New York Criminal Lawyer Blog.
Call us at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today to discuss your case and possible defenses.