Late last month, Takata Corp., a Japanese auto parts maker, pleaded guilty to fraud charges and agreed to pay approximately $1 billion in penalties after it was determined that the company concealed air bag defects that resulted in at least 16 deaths, most of which occurred in the United States.
By entering the guilty plea, Takata admitted to concealing evidence that millions of the company’s air bag inflators could explode if they encounter enough force, resulting in the hurling of lethal shrapnel at drivers and passengers.
The faulty inflators have been blamed for 11 deaths in the United States and are believed to have caused more than 180 injuries across the globe. The issue prompted the largest recall in the country’s automotive history, involving roughly 42 million vehicles and as many as 69 million inflators.
According to court records, the penalties against Takata include $850 million in restitution charges to automakers, a $25 million criminal fine, and $125 million dedicated to victims and their families.
What Qualifies as Fraud?
When an individual or entity is charged with fraud, they stand accused of theft through deception or misrepresentation. Although these types of legal cases typically involve defendants who are knowingly misrepresenting themselves for financial gain, there are still many cases today where the alleged fraud is actually accidental.
Even if the intent was never to commit a fraudulent crime, or act in a deceptive manner, the fact remains that being charged with criminal fraud is a major legal offense and should not be taken lightly.
There are several different types of behavior that typically lead to allegations or charges of fraud. The most common offenses generally involve:
- Pidgeon drop schemes
- Identity theft
- Mail fraud
- Ponzi schemes
- Depending on the severity of the situation, fraudulent actions can result in misdemeanor or felony charges. Generally, this is based on the value of assets acquired through the fraudulent action.
If you or someone you love stand accused, or charged with, a crime of a fraudulent nature, it is important that you consult with a criminal defense attorney at the earliest possible opportunity. Only a legal adviser specializing in criminal fraud defense can assess your situation and recommend a legal defense that targets the potential outcome.
Fraud Defense Attorneys in California
That’s where the criminal defense attorneys at Gurovich, Berk & Associates come in. Throughout the state of California, our highly-skilled criminal defense attorneys help provide legal counsel to clients facing criminal charges, including those stemming from fraud.
Working with our legal team means taking the most client-centered, cutting-edge approach to your defense. From conducting an investigation into the allegations against you to collecting evidence to use in your defense, our team is committed to going above and beyond and do whatever we can to help you secure a favorable result.
Our attorneys are standing by today, prepared to defend your rights. To schedule free initial consultation to examine your legal options with one of our defense attorneys, call Gurovich, Berk & Associates at (213) 385-1555.