If you have been charged with credit card fraud in Salt Lake City, you should be aware of the serious consequences you may face. A conviction of credit card fraud can lead to prison time, substantial fines, and other penalties. You may be charged with a misdemeanor or a third-degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison. To make matters worse, additional criminal charges typically associated with bank and financial fraud are usually filed along with these credit card fraud charges.
The most common cases of credit card fraud refer to the attempted use of someone else’s credit card. There are times when there is an implicit or explicit mistaken authorization to use the card, or there is a miscommunication involving the initial approval to use the credit card. Keep in mind that you could be charged with multiple crimes — both state and federal — and face a level of penalties you never expected. One mistake can devolve into a serious and complicated scenario that can spin out of control without the right legal counsel.
If you or someone you know have been charged with credit card fraud in Salt Lake City, Utah, you should contact the offices of attorney Darwin Overson. Darwin is an experienced credit card fraud defense lawyer, and his track record shows his commitment to successful legal representation. Call (801) 758-2287 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
Common Credit Card Fraud Crimes
According to Section 76-6-506(5) of Utah’s Criminal Code, the term card includes any type of financial transaction card. Not all credit card fraud charges involve the actual use of a credit card and can extend to situations involving the use of information from another person’s credit card; he law’s broad language referring to credit card fraud as financial transaction card offenses, therefore, encompasses multiple situations. With this broad definition, actions – as opposed to method – become the focus of the crime. A skilled attorney can explain the complex concepts that characterize credit card fraud and the other criminal charges you should expect.
Utah statutes specifically seek to exclude situations involving an honest mistake. A conviction for this crime cannot occur without proof of actions showing intent or a goal to deceive or engage in fraudulent conduct. All too often, an authorization can be mistaken and give the appearance of deceit, but this will not meet the legal standard required to obtain a conviction. You may also face the following charges, depending on the circumstances:
- Identity theft
- Debit and credit card fraud
- Use of illegal devices, such as skimmers and other counterfeit access technology
- Theft by check
- Possession of a forged writing device or device for writing
- Unlawful use of a card
- Unlawful acquisition, possession or transfer of a card
People accused of credit card fraud can also face federal prosecution, depending on the circumstances. Credit card fraud is a federal crime punishable with fines of up to $10,000 and possible prison time. You need an attorney with experience in both federal and state venues if you expect to face charges on both courts.
Penalties and Sentencing Guidelines for Credit Card Fraud in Utah
An attorney can explain the penalties corresponding to your situation, depending on the specific allegations against you. In addition to the fines and prison time, you may be obligated to provide restitution for criminal proceeds. Seizure of your assets and property is allowed in Utah to satisfy restitution requirements.
The following list explains the charges and penalties of credit card fraud:
- A class B misdemeanor for obtaining property in the amount of $500 or less is punishable by up to six months in jail.
- A class A misdemeanor for obtaining property valued in the amount between $500 and $1,500 is punishable by up to one year in jail.
- A third-degree felony for allegedly obtaining property valued in the amount between $1,500 and $5,000 is punishable by up to five years in prison.
- A second-degree felony for allegedly obtaining property that exceeds $5,000 is punishable by 15 years in prison.
The charge depends not only on the total value of the property but also on the other criminal charges alleged. In Utah, multiple credit card offenses can be aggregated into a single, more severe offense. For this reason, you should have an experienced attorney who can help you understand the penalties associated with each offense.
If this is not your first criminal charge, depending on your previous offense, you may have a more complicated situation ahead of you. A felony conviction can irremediably tarnish your record, and there are other potential implications in your life.
Call a Trustworthy Salt Lake City Criminal Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with credit card fraud, you need an attorney who will protect your rights and present your side of the story. Attorney Darwin Overson takes these charges very seriously and works relentlessly to seek a reduction or dismissal. He doesn’t stand for unconstitutional abuses of criminal procedures. Darwin Overson understands that you deserve respect and will fight for the best possible outcome. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, call (801) 758-2287.