Check fraud is quite common these days. It takes place when an individual seeks to make a purchase, or obtain bank account funds or the transaction of finances through a counterfeited or false check.
Basically, there are four types of check fraud, namely forgery, paper hanging, check kiting and counterfeiting and alteration. Although it may be tempting to do, this mistake will turn into something that you will deeply regret later on.
Forging another person’s name knowingly on a check without the permission of the person can make you guilty of federal check fraud. When it comes to the penalties, they can be really harsh, such as imprisonment for years and substantial fines. If you are convicted, you will require an aggressive and strong defense. This is where our Pittsburgh check fraud lawyers at Logue Law Group can help. We have some of the best Criminal Defense Lawyers who will leave no stone unturned to help you emerge victorious.
What is Federal Check Fraud?
Intentionally passing a counterfeit check is illegal, as is intentionally using a check in any way for obtaining services or property which you do not intend to pay for. This comprises forging a check, altering the amount, or signing using another person’s name devoid of their permission. A prosecutor in the case of federal check fraud will be required to prove that you had every intention of using a counterfeit or forged check to defraud.
When you deposit a counterfeit or forged check to the bank, that action will be utilized as proof in court that you purposed to misrepresent the same and defraud the bank. In fact, one type of fraud can link up to other criminal issues like check kiting, which includes an account check in one bank while at the same time knowing that you do not have money for covering it and then deposit the check in another bank in a different account. Once charged with federal check fraud naturally you will face a good number of years in prison, along with having to pay a substantial fine and forfeiture of property. This makes it essential to consult a check fraud attorney in Pittsburgh without delay.
Check fraud charges range in classification from a misdemeanor to a felony, with penalties as mild as community service to as severe as years of prison time.
Federal vs. State
The federal court system in the true sense is quite complex, and when it comes to its procedures, it varies from that of the Pittsburgh court system. The former uses unique and complicated sentencing guidelines for deciding the amount of punishment that the person convicted of fraud should be given. Again, the federal prosecutors have the flexibility of drawing on huge resources that include in-depth investigations carried out by the federal agents. The prosecutors in the Pittsburgh area do not possess such resources. Once convicted of a federal crime naturally you will face higher consequences. But, with our Pittsburgh Criminal Defense Lawyer by your side, you can keep all your worries at bay.
There are defenses available to a person accused of fraud. Since a prosecutor is required to prove intent to defraud, a defense attorney with experience can present evidence that the alleged offender thought they had sufficient funds in the account to cover the check. Depending on the circumstances of the case, an attorney could argue that the alleged offender was mistaken for someone else, that he was entrapped, or that there is not sufficient evidence to convict.