Fraud Is Not Always an Online Act
When we think about fraud, most of us conjure notions of vast online scams and the world of high finances, but this is by no means the end of the story. Fraud can come in very low-tech varieties that are treated just as seriously by the law.
One example of fraud that does not involve online activities is check fraud. While we write fewer and fewer checks these days – if any – many of us still maintain checkbooks. Most businesses continue to employ checks for a variety of reasons. Further, credit cards can be similarly employed in low-tech forms of fraud. Consider all of the following situations:
When someone takes a check that is written to someone else and falsely presents himself or herself as the named recipient
When someone forges another person's check, paying himself or herself
When someone uses another person's credit card to make in-store purchases (falsely presenting himself or herself as the cardholder)
This brand of fraud has not disappeared with the meteoric rise in online commerce.
What Is Fraud?
In the State of Texas, fraud is defined as someone's deliberate attempt to deceive someone else – usually with the intention of personal financial advancement. When someone defrauds someone else, they use false information, misleading statements, or other forms of deceit to obtain ill-gotten money, goods, services, or information.
What Is Forgery?
In the State of Texas, forgery is defined as altering, making, executing, completing, or authenticating any document in an attempt to do any of the following:
To serve as the act of someone who did not authorize it
To execute the document at a time, at a place, or in a numbered sequence other than was intended
To serve as a copy of an original when there is, in fact, no such original
In other words, manipulating financial documents – and different kinds of writings – can amount to forgery.
Every instance of a fraud charge is unique to the situation at hand. Still, associated fines and penalties can be severe, ranging from a misdemeanor to a serious felony. The associated conviction rate can also be relatively high. This rate difference is because low-tech offenses such as these tend to happen in stores and banks – where video evidence is readily available. Further, because these crimes typically occur in face-to-face interactions, it is not unusual for clerks and tellers to testify against the accused.
Seek the Help You Need from an Experienced Killeen Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If you are facing criminal charges, it is a serious matter. Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard – proudly serving Killeen, Texas – is an imposing criminal defense lawyer who dedicates his impressive career to helping clients like you successfully prevail in their legal cases. Your case matters, so please do not hesitate to contact us online or call us at 254-501-4040 for more information today.