What penalties could I face for a conviction of wire fraud?
Federal fraud charges vary in severity from simple credit card fraud to complex wire fraud and securities fraud. Federal prosecutors are among the toughest in the nation, and federal fraud charges can carry potentially devastating penalties like mandatory prison time along with hefty fines. Further, any federal fraud conviction will remain on your permanent criminal record, which could impact your career, ability to obtain financing, and much more. Anyone who is being investigated for a federal fraud charge or has been arrested for such a charge should contact a fraud criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible.
Federal Fraud Charges Explained
Federal fraud charges can be found within 18 U.S. Code Chapter 47 and Chapter 63, among other federal statutes. Some of the most commonly charged federal fraud offenses include:
Wire Fraud and Mail Fraud
The crime of wire fraud makes it unlawful for someone to use a “wire,” which includes the internet, television, or radio, to commit fraud. The crime of wire fraud is related to that of mail fraud, which makes it illegal to use or attempt to use the mail for the purpose of executing a scheme to defraud. Wire fraud and mail fraud are two of the most commonly charged federal offenses due to their broad nature which allows them to be charged in connection with other crimes. A conviction for either of these offenses could lead to a prison sentence of up to 20 years or even more.
Tax fraud or evasion can be charged when a taxpayer attempts to avoid paying federal taxes. Charges may result, for instance, when a business owner overestimates business expenses or files a false tax return underestimating income. Tax fraud can result in a prison sentence of up to five years along with fines.
Securities fraud, set out in 18 U.S.C. Section 1348, mainly involves misrepresentations by brokers or others within the financial industry to induce investors to purchase or make other financial decisions on the basis of the fraudulent information. Activities that commonly result in securities fraud charges include Ponzi schemes, broker embezzlement, and currency fraud. Security fraud charges are serious and could result in years in prison.
Federal fraud charges are typically felony offenses, with penalties ranging from months to years in prison. Depending on the charge and the severity of the defendant’s alleged actions, federal fraud charges could prove devastating to your life and livelihood. Contact a criminal defense lawyer at the first sign of legal troubles so as to protect your freedom today.
Posted in: Criminal Defense