Fraud Crimes in Georgia
Fraud crimes in Georgia cover a multitude of topics from giving the wrong name to a police officer to identity theft to computer trespass. The most common types of fraud in Georgia are credit and debit card theft. With the increase in debit card use over the past years, more and more people are having their personal information compromised.
Lawson and Berry and their team of Georgia Fraud Attorneys have over 20 years experience and are familiar with the subtle differences that distinguish each of the crimes and can help you build a strong defense. Don't wait because you and your loved one's future depends on it. Call us today and schedule a free consultation.
Fraud Crimes in Georgia Include:
Aggravated Identity Fraud: Identify fraud is a very common crime in America. Identity fraud becomes aggravated when the information is used in order to get a job. The person whose information was taken could be a real person, fictitious person, or deceased person.
Computer Forgery: Computer crimes are also known as cyber crimes. Computer forgery occurs when a person creates, alters, or deletes data on a computer system. The punishment for being convicted of computer forgery is a fine up to $50,000, up to 15 years in prison, or both. It will also be a felony conviction.
Computer Invasion of Privacy: A person will be guilty of computer invasion of privacy when they use a computer with the intent to access another's personal information without their permission. This includes examining any employment, medical, salary, credit, or financial data without their authority.
Computer Password Disclosure: Computer password disclosure is a serious crime in Georgia. It occurs when someone reveals the password to a computer that results in damage to the owner of the computer. The password must have been revealed knowing that the owner did not consent to the disclosure.
Computer Theft: A person will be guilty of computer theft when they uses a computer without permission to take, obtain, or convert property for his or her own use. It does not matter whether or not they had the intention to deprive the owner of possession. Computer theft also occurs when a person obtains property through deceitful means.
Computer Trespass: Computer trespass can manifest itself in a number of ways. One way a person commits computer trespass is causing a computer to malfunction. Another way is when a person knowingly and without authority deletes or alters a computer program from a computer. However, no matter how the trespass is committed, it is considered a felony conviction.
Deceptive Business Practices: A person can be convicted of deceptive business practices when they participate in misleading procedures in their business. This includes using a false weight for a device or falsely recording a quantity. Another example is if the offender delivered less than the represented quantity of product. No matter what type of practice you were charged with, it is critical that you hire a Georgia Fraud Attorney to assist with your case.
Deposit Account Fraud: Deposit account fraud occurs when a person writes a check on an account that has insufficient funds to cover the check. This is also referred to as writing bad checks. A person can be charged with deposit account fraud if they write checks from an account that they know to be closed.
Endangering a Security Interest: It is illegal for a person to destroy, remove, conceal, encumber, or transfer property subject to a security interest with the intent to hinder enforcement of that interest. The security interest could be in a vehicle, piece of machinery or any type of property.
Failure to Pay for Natural Products or Chattels: Natural products or chattels includes Christmas trees, peaches, apples, watermelons, horses, cattle, hogs, sheep, goats, timber, or poultry. A person who takes possession of natural products or chattels yet fails to pay for the items within 20 days will be guilty of a crime.
False Report of a Crime: Police officers respond to hundreds of criminal activity calls a day. Sometimes people knowingly gives a false report of a crime to a law enforcement officer. In Georgia, this is a serious offense because the defendant is preventing law enforcement from responding to real threats.
False Representation of a Veteran: Veterans hold a special place in society and it is illegal to falsely identify as a veteran to receive a tangible benefit. A person convicted of falsely claiming to be a veteran may be guilty of a misdemeanor or a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature depending on the circumstances.
False Statement to Police: Police officers take witness statements and interview suspects to try and piece together the whole story of an incident. Because of the importance in receiving the truth, Georgia law criminalizes knowingly giving a false statement to a law enforcement officer. It is also a crime to conceal or cover up a material fact.
Financial Transaction Card Fraud: Financial transaction card fraud is a crime that affects thousands of people across the United States. Many people have had their debit card taken without their permission with the intent to defraud. One of the key elements of financial transaction card fraud is that the act was done with intent to defraud.
Financial Transaction Card Theft: Similarly to financial transaction card fraud, theft occurs when a person takes a credit or debit card from another without their consent. Many of us have fallen victim to this crime and received a phone call from our bank telling us our card has been stolen or was being used in another state. A person convicted of financial transaction card theft will be charged with a felony.
Foreclosure Fraud: A person commits foreclosure fraud when they purchase or attempt to purchase residential property by means of a fraudulent scheme. The penalty for this crime will be punished by jail time and fines. It will also be treated as a felony.
Forgery: Forgery involves a false document, signature, or other imitation that is used with the intent to deceive another. In Georgia, forgery has four different degrees. It can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the circumstances.
Fraudulent Attempts to Obtain Refunds: The refunds this statute is referring to are those when returning merchandise to the store, refunds on tickets, or other services. The penalty for this crime will be treated as a misdemeanor.
Fraudulent Business Practices Using the Internet or Email: It is illegal for individuals to use the internet or email to solicit identifying information from a person for the intent of defrauding them. A person convicted under the statute will be guilty of a felony.
Fraudulent Obtaining or Attempting to Obtain Public Housing or Reduction in Public Housing: This crime refers to attempts to establish eligibility for public housing through means of a false statement, failure to disclosure material information, or another fraudulent scheme. It is punished as a misdemeanor in Georgia.
Giving a False Name: Many people get nervous when speaking to the police and give out wrong information. Accidentally giving the wrong name, birthdate or address is not a crime. However, if you provide an incorrect name, address, or birthdate with intent to mislead the officer, then you have committed a crime.
Identity Fraud: Identity fraud is a highly publicized crime in Georgia. A person has committed identity fraud when they use another's personal information without their permission. There are many defenses if you have been charged with identity fraud. Contact one of our fraud attorneys in Georgia today to talk about your case.
Improper Solicitation of Money: Improper solicitation is a misdemeanor crime in Georgia. It occurs when a person seeks payment for services not yet performed or not yet ordered.
Misleading Transmittal and Use of Individual Name, Trade Name, or Registered Trademark Logo, Legal or Official Seal, or Copyrighted Symbol over Computer or Telephone Network: This offense occurs when a person transmits data using an official mark to falsely state or imply that the person is authorized to use the mark. If convicted, the accused will be charged with a misdemeanor in Georgia.
Misrepresenting the Origin or Ownership of Timber or Agriculture Commodities: When purchasing timber or other agricultural products, it is critically important to the buyer to know the origin of the materials. A false statement regarding the origin of the materials is a crime in Georgia. It can be punished as a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the value of the material misrepresented.
Unauthorized Use of Financial Transaction Card: A financial transaction card includes credit cards, debit cards, and bank services cards among other things. While there are two different punishments depending on what exactly was done with the card, a crime occurs when the accused uses the card for an unauthorized purpose.
Penalty for a Conviction for Fraud Crimes in Georgia
A conviction for fraud crimes generally comes with a prison term. While each crime and case is different, that is the general outcome. The fine amount varies from case to case.
However, another penalty that could be awarded by the Court is for the defendant to pay restitution to the victim. Restitution is where the defendant reimburses the victim for any expenses that resulted from the crime committed against them. It could include the cost of paying for the stolen items or for pain and suffering caused by your actions.
Defenses to Fraud Crimes in Georgia
While each crimes has specific defenses that apply to it; there are some defenses that generally apply to fraud crimes in Georgia including:
Consent: If you had permission from the owner of the property to use the card or the computer or their personal information, then a crime has not been committed. However, there must be evidence that showing that you had the authority.
Lack of Evidence: There must be sufficient evidence tying you to the fraudulent acts. If there is not enough evidence or it is insufficient to show you committed a crime, then you cannot be found guilty.
Unintentional: Many fraud crimes require that the criminal act be done intentionally or knowingly. If the action was done accidentally and there is evidence to support this, then you may not be guilty of a crime.
This is not an extensive list of the defenses that could be used in your case. These are just some of the defenses your Fraud Attorney in Georgia will evaluate to see if they apply. Every case is different and our Georgia Fraud Lawyers will work with you to provide the best defense. That is why it is vital to call a Georgia Fraud Attorney at Lawson and Berry to speak with them about your specific case.
Fraud crimes can be highly technical and difficult to navigate on your own. You need an Attorney who understands the consequences a conviction will have on your future. Your Georgia Fraud Attorney will investigate all the details surrounding your case and evaluate your options. They will be available all the time to you – even nights and weekends – because your case is important. Lawson and Berry and their team of Lawyers will work with you to fight your charge and avoid a conviction. Call today to schedule a free case evaluation.