The RICO Act prohibits organizations from running secretive, illegal businesses behind closed doors. This law allows anyone to bring criminal or civil charges against organized groups that commit white-collar crimes. The law is used regularly to combat a wide range of crimes in South Carolina and the U.S. in general.
The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act was enacted as Title IX of the Organized Crime Control Act of 1970. The purpose is to punish organizations by filing criminal and civil charges at the federal level. It has also been extended into dozens of state laws. Originally meant to fight the mafia, the RICO Act has been extended to fight racketeering and other business-related crimes. The law allows state and federal government officials to go after large, criminal organizations and not just individuals.
The law’s goal is to prevent racketeering and monitor the legality of activities that occur within established organizations. However, the act is often misleading as to how it interprets the right to freedom of association. Organizations that are classified as being illegal under the RICO Act may appear to be legal to certain groups and individuals.
The RICO Act might be used to prosecute a wide variety of white-collar crimes, from extortion to money laundering to bribery. White-collar offenses are nonviolent acts that involve obtaining money through deceptive means.
Convicted individuals face high fines and years of imprisonment that vary by the severity of the crime. In addition, they risk losing their business, their livelihood and all sources of income. For this reason, individuals accused of white-collar crimes need a strong defense if they plan to fight the charges and prevent conviction.