Credit Card Fraud
Credit card fraud has become increasingly complex in Los Angeles and around the entire state of California over recent years. While this criminal offense was once simple and often involved only one individual, today there may be multiple parties involved. Usually considered a white collar crime in the state, severe penalties will result for those convicted, and may include substantial prison time along with steep fines.
Basically, credit card fraud involves the theft of another individual's card for the purpose of purchasing goods without the consent or knowledge of the card's owner. This crime can also be committed without the perpetrator actually having physical possession of the card, if that person uses the card for his own personal gain without the cardholder's permission. The Justice Firm is a team of talented Los Angeles credit card fraud lawyers who work diligently to protect the legal rights and freedom of those accused of white collar or fraud offenses. We urge you to contact us immediately if you have been arrested, charged, or are under investigation for the fraudulent use of a credit card.Los Angeles Credit Card Fraud Charges
While we have described the most basic form of credit card fraud above, there are other forms of committing this offense which may leave you facing harsh consequences. Here are a few examples of offenses typically committed which may result in criminal charges being filed:
- Fraud rings involving the operation of factories to mass produce illegal credit cards
- Counterfeiting credit cards
- Accessing accounts, account numbers, or PIN numbers belonging to another individual
- Fraudulent use of a stolen or lost credit card
- Purchasing goods with a stolen credit card, then selling the goods over Internet sites such as eBay
You may be investigated by both state and federal authorities if suspected of credit card fraud, depending on the factors of your case and how serious the allegations appear to be. In fact, some individuals accused of this offense are even investigated by the Secret Service. Regardless of how minor or serious the accusations against you may seem, it is vital to your freedom, career, and future to obtain the legal support and guidance of a skilled and experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney.Penalties for Credit Card Fraud in California
In California, the penalties for credit card fraud vary significantly depending on the seriousness of the charges. However, in most cases this offense will be charged as forgery, grand theft, or petty theft, leaving those convicted facing the following penalties:
- Forgery charged as a felony will leave the convicted facing 16 months, two or three years in state prison, and facing fines of up to $10,000. If charged as a misdemeanor, penalties will include fines of up to $1,000 and up to one year in a county jail.
- Grand theft will leave you facing the same penalties as those you would be subject to if charged with felony forgery
- Petty theft is a misdemeanor offense which will leave those convicted facing penalties which include a maximum fine of $1,000, and up to six months in county jail.
It is important to note that more serious crimes involving credit card fraud may result in prison time of 10 to 15 years, and fines of as much as $250,000 if convicted of access device fraud, another term for credit card fraud.Contact The Justice Firm Immediately
Many people find that the criminal penalties are not what actually inflict the most substantial damage to their lives. It is often the social stigma, embarrassment, and ruin of a reputation and career that are the worst punishment when accused of credit card fraud. As compassionate Los Angeles credit card fraud attorneys, we understand that individuals who are arrested or charged with any white collar crime want to avoid both the penalties and the negative impact to other areas of their lives. We will work aggressively to ensure you do not face unnecessary punishment. Contact us now at 310-914-2444 for unsurpassed legal representation.