Internet Fraud

Simmons Wagner, LLP Can Help You Fight Charges of Internet Fraud

As the name implies, internet fraud refers to a crime committed on the internet. Also known as cybercrime, internet crime can fall into several categories: fraudulent schemes carried out on the internet (or through email), phishing, and accessing a computer or its data unlawfully. Keep reading to get the facts about these charges and contact Simmons Wagner, LLP at (949) 439-5857 if you require a free legal consultation.

Fraudulent Schemes Carried Out on the Internet

This can refer to just about anything a person does that deceives someone else in order to get something of value. Common examples include:

  • Non-delivery of merchandise
  • Advance fee fraud
  • Real estate overpayment fraud
  • Sweepstakes or lottery scams
  • Work from home scams
  • Fraudulent sales transactions

This is a federal crime that can be prosecuted by the federal government. To do so, they must prove the following elements:

  • The defendant had a plan to commit fraud
  • The defendant had the intention to defraud someone
  • The defendant used some type of electronic communication to move forward with the plan

Note that it is not required that the scheme was successful – only that the defendant intended to be successful.

Potential penalties for conviction of federal internet fraud include up to twenty years in prison and significant fines.

Phishing Schemes

This includes things like identity theft and credit card theft that occur through the internet. It is the process of tricking someone on the internet in order to get them to give out their personal information, which is then used for unlawful purposes. It can be charged under several laws.

  • Identity theft laws in which the defendant willfully took personal information from someone and used it for an unlawful purpose, retained personal identifying info from someone without their consent with the intention to commit fraud, sold or gave personal information to someone else knowing that the info would be used to commit fraud, or selling or giving personal information without consent in order to commit fraud.
  • Credit card fraud in which the defendant uses someone else’s card to make unapproved purchases.

Note that phishing schemes can be punished by the federal government or the state of California, depending on the specifics of the case. Conviction of certain federal phishing crimes can result in up to 15 years in federal prison.

Work with an Attorney Who Can Help with State and Federal Charges

Charges related to internet crimes can be very complicated and involve complicated data. It is essential that you work with an attorney who has the know-how to understand and defend these charges. You have found that attorney in Simmons Wagner, LLP.

Additionally, we can help with both federal and state charges. Call now at (949) 439-5857 to secure your free legal consultation.