Fraud Charges Can Disrupt Lives And Ruin Careers
Any transaction involving false, altered or hidden information that results in a financial loss may be considered fraud. In cases of statutory fraud, the accused does not have to be aware that they committed fraud to be found guilty. The penalties for fraud may include decades behind bars and fines reaching six figures. Simply being charged with fraud is often enough to derail a successful career. If you’ve been accused of fraud, it’s important to get legal representation as quickly as possible.
Common Forms Of Bank Fraud
Bank fraud is a blanket term for any action involving misrepresentation of fact that is intended to fraudulently acquire money, property or other assets from a financial institution. The list of charges that fall under the category of bank fraud is long, but some of the most common crimes include:
- Forging or falsifying financial documents
- Phishing operations or other internet fraud
- Debit or credit card fraud
- Stolen, forged or altered checks
- Booster checks and check kiting
- Fraud involving wire transfers, appraisals or accounting
A single count of bank fraud carries a penalty of up to 30 years in prison and as much as $1 million in fines. With multiple counts of fraud, the judge has discretion to increase the sentencing.
Laundering Any Amount Of Money Is A Felony
If you knowingly use illegal funds in any way, whether investing it, spending it or simply accepting illegal money, you are guilty of money laundering. As the amount of the laundered funds increases, the penalties for the crime increase, but it is a felony offense regardless of the amount of money involved. Dollar amounts as small as $2,500 can result in a state felony.
Identity Theft Is A Misdemeanor Leading To Fines And Jail Time
In Texas, identity theft falls under one of two general categories:
- Possessing or fraudulently using identifying information
- Acquiring or transferring financial information without authorization
With the advances in technology and the expansion of the internet, identity theft has grown dramatically in the last 20 years. The devastating financial damage that can result, combined with public fear and other factors, has ushered in severe penalties for identity theft. Obtaining someone else’s financial information without their permission is a Class B misdemeanor. Providing someone else’s financial information to a third party is a Class A misdemeanor. Both levels of misdemeanor mean jail time and fines of up to $4,000 on top of restitution to the identity theft victim.
Prescription Fraud Charges In Texas
For people in the medical field, just the accusation of prescription fraud can damage a career. Prescription fraud in Texas is usually a felony with penalties of up to 20 years in prison or up to $10,000 in fines. We understand the importance of discretion when accusations of prescription fraud arise. Offenses that may result in charges of prescription fraud include:
- Possession of illegally obtained prescription drugs
- Doctor shopping to obtain prescription drugs
- Creating fake prescriptions
- Distributing prescription drugs without a license
Using the internet to illegally buy, sell or distribute prescription drugs is usually classified as either international or interstate trafficking. This type of trafficking is investigated by federal agencies, and a guilty verdict carries severe penalties even for first-time offenders.