Car Dealers Charged with Fraud
A group of people who worked at Serra Nissan, in Birmingham ended 2014 on a bad note. FBI agents raided the car dealership. The agents charged two employees, Gerald Shepard and Jeffrey Green, with three felony counts. The former car dealers will soon have to answer for charges of conspiracy, bank fraud, and third charge related to tax fraud.
During the 26 years that I served in federal prison, I met and interacted with many individuals who faced similar circumstances to those of Mr. Shepard and Mr. Green. They were hardworking individuals who worked in a competitive business. They considered themselves bending the rules, not breaking the law. At least they deluded themselves into believing that no one would consider their behavior as criminal.
The question I have for Mr. Shepard and Mr. Green is how they will respond to these charges.
Two days have passed since the FBI served the two men with the three-count criminal information. By now the defendants likely have retained a criminal defense attorney. If they could not afford a defense attorney, then the court will appoint counsel. My information on the alleged crime is limited to the FBI press release. Their lawyers will be in a much better position to advise them on the appropriate course of action with regard to judicial proceedings.
But judicial proceedings are only one part of the complexity that now hangs over the life of the two defendants and their family members. And questions remain of whether they’re ready to respond to the problem in the best possible way. Will the two men speak honestly with counsel or will they prevaricate in a futile effort to minimize culpability?
Many defendants who face charges for fraud find it difficult to accept responsibility and begin a deliberate path to put troubles behind them. For one thing, they do not perceive themselves as criminals. Shame also makes it difficult for them to speak honestly. Finally, they’re afraid of how the criminal charges will influence the rest of their life.
At PrisonProfessor.com, we strive to serve defendants who face charges for white-collar crimes. Their defense attorneys are best suited to guide them through judicial proceedings. Yet defendants should educate themselves about options. They should learn about strategies that may be available for them to recalibrate their life and advance to new beginnings.
Defendants who choose to accept responsibility would find value in PrisonProfessor.com. We collaborate with attorneys to serve the defendant. Besides providing lesson plans to guide individuals, we spend time with defendants to collaborate with them in writing effective sentence-mitigation packages. Then we prepare them for the journey through prison. Most importantly, we teach them strategies to prepare for a successful outcome.