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NY Penal Law § 460.22: Aggravated Enterprise Corruption

July 2, 2020 Federal Criminal Attorneys

Enacted to address the plague of organized crime in New York, the enterprise corruption statute lays out a type of serious crime that involves not just one criminal offense, but a group of individuals working for an enterprise and being engaged in a sequence of crimes. For instance , if a securities firm systematically defrauds multiple clients by distributing false account statements, putting unearned commissions in their own pockets, and handing out improper disclosures, and the employees who work for that firm intentionally took part in the fraud, then those employees could face prosecution for enterprise corruption. There are two enterprise corruption crimes listed in the New York criminal code: enterprise corruption and aggravated enterprise corruption. Aggravated enterprise corruption is the more egregious of the two crimes.   You could be prosecuted under New York Penal Law § 460.20 for enterprise corruption if you are knowingly employed by a criminal enterprise and you:

  1. Intentionally take part in the criminal activity of said enterprise,
  2. Intentionally take on any interest or control of an enterprise by carrying out criminal activity, or
  3. Take part in a pattern of criminal activity and knowingly invest proceeds from such conduct into an enterprise.

For the purposes of this statue, the term “criminal activity” is defined as a minimum of 3 criminal acts, 2 of which must be felonies. Among these, one of the felonies must have been committed within 5 years of when the criminal action began, and each of the requisite criminal acts must have occurred within 2 years of the previous criminal act.

The charge will be alleviated to aggravated enterprise corruption under New York Penal Law § 460.22 if:

  1. Two or more of the crimes are categorized as Class B felonies or higher, and at least 2 of the offenses are armed felony crimes, or
  2. One crime is an armed felony offense and one is a violation of § 2 of the criminal possession of a disposable weapon statute, or
  3. One of the crimes is categorized as a Class B violent felony offense and 2 crimes are violations of § 2 of the criminal possession of a disposable weapon statute.

Offenses that are Related

Enterprise corruption: New York Penal Law § 460.20

Possible Defenses

Aggravated enterprise corruption is an extremely complicated charge to prosecute. In order to successfully prosecute this charge against you, the prosecutor needs to prove every element of the offense. This means, for instance, that if you are accused of committing 2 Class B armed felony offenses, you can successfully defend against an aggravated enterprise corruption charge if you can successfully have at least one of those charges dropped.

The Sentence

The crime of aggravated enterprise corruption is a Class A-I felony offense. The maximum prison sentence is life behind bars.

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