Racketeering occurs when a person conducts a "racket," which is a planned or organized criminal act. The criminal acts can involve anything from extortion to drug distribution to money laundering. In order to be considered racketeering, there usually has to be a pattern of criminal activity, as opposed to one or two random or independent criminal acts. In addition to the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), most state laws - including Minnesota - have also enacted laws that address and criminalize racketeering.
Minnesota Racketeering Laws: The Basics
While it's important to read the actual text of a law, this can be a time-consuming task since laws are often written in "legalese." That's why it can be very helpful to also read a summary of the law your researching. In the following table, you can find both an overview of Minnesota racketeering laws as well as links to relevant statutes.
Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 609. Criminal Code, Section 609.901, et seq. (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations)
The crime of racketeering occurs when a person:
- is employed by or associated with an enterprise and intentionally conducts or participates in the affairs of the enterprise by taking part in a pattern of criminal activity;
- maintains or acquires an interest in or control of an enterprise, or an interest in real property, by participating in a pattern of criminal activity; or
- participates in a pattern of criminal activity and knowingly invests any proceeds derived from that conduct, or any proceeds derived from the investment or use of those proceeds, in an enterprise or in real property.
There are a variety of criminal penalties that a person convicted of racketeering may face including imprisonment for up to 20 years and/or fines of up to $1,000.000*.
*If the person convicted received economic gain or caused economic loss or personal injury as a result of the crime, they face a maximum fine of three times the gross value gained or loss caused (whichever is greater) plus investigation, court, and prosecution costs minus the value of forfeited property.
Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 609. Criminal Code:
Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Minnesota Racketeering Laws: Related Resources
If you'd like more information and resources related to this topic, you can visit the links listed below.
Facing Racketeering Charges in Minnesota and Need Help? Contact an Attorney
As you can see, a racketeering conviction in Minnesota can lead to serious prison time and hefty fines, but there's a heavy burden on the government to prove any charges against you. If you've been charged with racketeering - or any other crime - it's best to speak with a local criminal defense attorney who will be able to explain how Minnesota racketeering laws apply to your case and who can help map out the best strategy going forward.