Credit Card Offenses
Credit Card Fraud
To convict someone of the most common version of Credit Card Fraud, the prosecutor must prove the following four elements
1. That someone represented themselves as the owner of a credit card,
2. Without the permission of the actual owner of the credit card,
3. With the intent to defraud the owner of the credit card, and
4. Based on the misrepresentation, money or services were obtained.
Each of these elements can be difficult to proe and there are many potential defenses available.
Credit Card Theft
Credit card theft is when someone is charged with stealing another person's credit card or the credit card number. It is not necessary that the credit card or credit card number is used. Stealing the card or number is enough to convict.
What are the punishments for credit card offenses?
Almost all the credit card offenses are Class 6 felonies. That means they are punishable by up to 5 years in prison.
Can I be charged for each individual credit card or credit card number?
Yes. It's come to prosecutors to stack charges. Stacking charges means that you are charged with a significant number of individual crimes for the same conduct. For example, you can be charged with both credit card fraud and theft for taking someone card and using it. If you steal someone's wallet and there are three credit cards in the wallet, you can be charged with three separate credit card theft charges and then another three credit card fraud charges if you use each credit card.
That's tough because if you stole the same persons wallet and they have three twenty dollar bills in the wallet, you couldn't be convicted of three separate larceny charges. Credit cards are treated differently because the legislature has written the credit card laws to allow for charge stacking.
You need an affordable attorney who has your interests at heart. Make sure that you understand your options. Call us for a free consultation.