Wire fraud is a form of fraud that involves the internet or telecommunications. A fax, phone call, social media messaging, text and email are examples of some of the things that can be used to commit wire fraud. It is typically punished by fines or prison time.
The Key Elements of Wire Fraud
The following elements of wire fraud have to be proven.
1.) The defendant intentionally devised a plan to defraud someone out of money.
2.) The defendant intentionally defrauded someone.
3.) It was obvious that interstate wire communications were going to be used.
4.) Interstate wire communications were used to commit the fraud.
Punishment for Wire Fraud
Wire fraud is a crime that is punished at the federal level. You can spend a maximum of 20 years in prison. Individuals who commit wire fraud can be fined up to $250,000. Businesses that commit fraud can be fined up to $500,000.
There is a five-year Statute of Limitations for wire fraud. However, if a financial institution is involved, then the Statute of Limitation is 10 years.
Examples of Wire Fraud
The Nigerian prince scam is one of the most common types of wire fraud. The scammer will send a person a email saying that they have inherited a large sum of money. They will ask for one’s financial information. The purpose of this scam is to clean out the person’s bank account.
Telemarketing fraud is another example of wire fraud. Scammers often call people over the phone to let them know that they are a prize winner. They will ask for the person’s information in order to steal their money and identity.
Defenses Against Wire Fraud Defense Lawyers
If you have been accused of fraud, then you need the help of a wire fraud defense lawyer. There are many defenses that can be used to fight the allegations that you are facing. Some of the possible defenses include.
In order to be convicted of fraud, the prosecutors have to prove that you devised a scheme to commit fraud. If your attorney proves that you did not intentionally engage in fraud, then the charges can be dropped.
Good Faith or Lack of Intent
Good faith is similar to the constructive fraud defense. The government has to be able to prove that you devised a deceptive plan.
Lack of Authority
Lack of authority is a defense that can be used for fraud that is committed at the executive, corporate or ownership level. Employees who engage in fraud without the authorization of their employer may be able to use this defense.
Lack of Purpose
You have to send out communications that prove you had the intention of committing fraud. If the federal prosecutors cannot prove that you sent out communications, then your charges will likely be dropped.
Statute of Limitations
Charges cannot be filed after the Statute of Limitations has been filed.
You cannot be convicted of wire fraud if a representative of the government or a police officer coerced you into doing it because they threatened to have you arrested.
Illegal Search and Seizure
If the evidence was being used against you was obtained as the result of an illegal seizure, then it can be thrown out.
Call A Wire Fraud Defense Attorney
You need an attorney if you are facing wire fraud charges. Because these cases are often complex, you need someone who is going to develop an effective defensive strategy. Our attorneys will do everything within their power to challenge the accusations that have been made against you. They will increase your chances of getting your charges dropped.