Experienced California White Collar Criminal Defense Law Firm

White-Collar Crime Defense Lawyer Los Angeles, CA

Criminal defense attorneys aggressively defend clients facing all types of California white-collar crimes.

Being accused of any crime is an incredibly stressful experience, regardless of whether it is your first arrest or if you have been through the criminal justice system before. Few crimes, however, are as complex and difficult to understand as white-collar crimes. Prosecutors take white-collar crime seriously, and anyone facing these serious allegations should do everything they can to make sure they are prepared for what lies ahead.

At the Amicus Legal Group, we aggressively defend clients facing white-collar crimes. Our firm believes that great legal representation starts with a great team. We approach every case with the understanding that lawyers would not exist without clients, and our primary goal is to address each of our client’s individual needs. This may mean negotiating a favorable plea agreement so you can move on with your life as quickly as possible, or fighting your case tooth-and-nail. When you bring Amicus Legal Group onto your team, it will be a decision we will make sure you do not regret.

Types of California White Collar Crimes

California law does not provide a definition of white-collar crime. However, the term commonly refers to financial crimes that are most often committed by business people, politicians and other professionals. The term white-collar crime also generally implies an offense that involves some sort of dishonest act that was committed for a person’s financial gain. A few of the more common California white collar crimes include:


Someone commits bribery when they pay or offer to pay someone money (or something else of measurable value) in exchange for some type of official action.


Someone commits perjury when they lie while under oath at court or in some other type of judicial proceeding.


The term fraud refers to a wide range of offenses involving the use of deception for financial gain. California law has several different fraud crimes, including check fraud, securities fraud, mortgage fraud, healthcare fraud, identity fraud and mail fraud.


The crime of forgery involves making or altering a false document with the intent to defraud. For example, one common example of forgery is signing an account holder’s name on a check or changing the check amount.


Legally, embezzlement is “the fraudulent conversion of the property of another by a person in lawful possession of that property.” Simply stated, embezzlement is when someone places assets in the defendant’s care, and the defendant converts those assets to his own.


Someone commits extortion if they force or coerce someone to give up their property by use of “violence, fear, or under the pretense of authority.” Blackmailing is an example of extortion.

Protect Your Rights in a White Collar Criminal Case

Depending on the nature of the offense, either the state or federal government could prosecute a white-collar crime. Regardless of whether you are facing state white collar criminal charges or federal white-collar crimes, these cases must be taken seriously.

Rancho Cucamonga, CA Criminal Defense Lawyer

Increase your odds of winning

We have extensive experience representing individuals facing serious white-collar charges, including fraud, bribery, forgery, embezzlement and extortion. Our attorneys have extensive knowledge of the legal issues that frequently arise in these cases, as well as the necessary understanding of securities law, business law and contract law.

Increase your odds of winning

We have extensive experience representing individuals facing serious white-collar charges, including fraud, bribery, forgery, embezzlement and extortion. Our attorneys have extensive knowledge of the legal issues that frequently arise in these cases, as well as the necessary understanding of securities law, business law and contract law.

Defenses to California White Collar Charges

Financial crimes each have different elements. So, if someone is facing an Ontario forgery crime, the defenses will be different than if they faced allegations of bribery. However, almost all financial crimes require that a person have a “guilty mindset.” In legal terms, this is called the “mens rea” element of the offense.

Understanding Necessary Intent

Did the defendant possess the necessary intent to commit the crime?

Historically, there have been two parts to every crime: the “act” element, and the “intent” element. Thus, before someone can be found guilty of an offense, the prosecution must show that they

  • Committed the act outlined in the statute

    In white collar crimes, proving the intent element, or mens rea, can be challenging for the prosecution because there is rarely direct evidence of someone’s intent. Instead, the prosecution often relies on circumstantial evidence.

  • Did so with the necessary intent to violate the law

    Due to the lack of direct evidence, a common defense to any white-collar crime is that the defendant lacked the necessary intent to commit the crime.

Reach out to an experienced California white collar defense attorney today

If you have recently been arrested and charged with a California financial crime, reach out to the criminal defense attorneys at Amicus Legal Group. The firm aggressively defends clients facing all types of white-collar crimes. We love to stand up and fight for our clients, and have decades of experience defending our clients’ freedom. We know what it takes to help you put these allegations behind you so you can move on with your life.

To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, call us at (888) 588-1777. You can also reach us through our online form.

Client testimonials quote

Client Testimonials

Five Star California Law Firm
Occasionally you meet another attorney who is so impressive both personally and professionally that you want to be affiliated with them in any way you can both personally and professionally. That is how I feel about John-Paul. I not only consider him one of the finest attorneys I know, but I now proudly call him my friend. He is among the very best.
David Booth

John-Paul took my civil case when no one else would because other lawyers didn’t have confidence in my daughter who has special needs to testify, if needed. John-Paul won her case against the school district without a jury because he cared about my child, believed she was honest and deserved justice. He still doesn’t mind taking my calls whenever I have a question regarding her case.

Dionne L.

John-Paul is an extremely effective criminal defense attorney. The one thing that makes him stand out from other defense attorneys is that he talks to his clients to learn the circumstances surrounding their incident and then he makes a forceful and articulate argument in defense of his clients. I recommend my clients to John-Paul when they are in need of a criminal defense attorney because I know he will stand up for them.

Stephen Rinka

Mr. Serrao worked on my DUI charge earlier this year and all I can say is WOW! Not only did he keep me updated with the case but his knowledge of the process helped calm my nerves, which was very important to me. He showed care for me as a client and I can’t thank him enough. I would recommend him to anyone in need of a quality criminal defense attorney.

Derrick J.

I had the pleasure of working a very large scale drug case with Mr. Serrao, representing co-defendants. Mr. Serrao was a pleasure to work with. Highly skilled and very aggressive in his advocacy on his client’s behalf. I highly recommend Mr. Serrao for anyone looking for a criminal defense attorney.

Babak Farahan

Attorney John Paul-Serrao helped us to win our case against the insurance company after we were involved in a traffic accident where our car was rear ended, we tried to handle it ourselves with the insurance company and they did not want to cooperate with us, so we hired Mr. Serrao and he was able to get us a settlement above with the insurance company was willing to pay. I would highly recommend him.

Lupe G.

John-Paul is well known in our community as a smart and effective criminal defense lawyer who is sensitive to his clients’ situations and responsive to their needs. I refer my clients to him with confidence when they need help with the criminal justice system.

Lawrence Brock

John-Paul is a superb attorney. He was my mentor when I was in law school, and now as an attorney I still go to him for advice on complex cases. When my brother required representation I referred him to John-Paul. That is how highly I think of JP as an attorney. I would highly recommend him to anyone who needs representation.

Kit Westbrook
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