Legal Consequences of Mail and Wire Fraud
- Posted on: Aug 15 2023
Mail fraud and wire fraud are serious crimes that have serious criminal penalties. In fact, both of these forms of fraud are federal criminal offenses. To convict a person of these crimes, the prosecution must prove that the person charged is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecution also must prove that the defendant’s behavior meets all the required elements of the crime. Although there are multiple ways to commit these acts, mail fraud and wire fraud broadly involve defrauding or trying to defraud a person of property or money through the use of some type of interstate communication. As technology has progressed, the law prohibiting these types of fraud has expanded to include means of communication like text messages and emails. In this article, we examine the legal consequences of mail and wire fraud.
To obtain a conviction for mail fraud, the prosecution must prove that the defendant:
- Intended to devise or devised a scheme to defraud or to obtain property or money through the use of fraudulent or false pretenses;
- With the intention to defraud, and
- Used the postal service or mail to execute the fraud or scheme.
To obtain a conviction for wire fraud, the prosecution must prove that the defendant:
- Participated in or devised a plan or scheme to defraud or to obtain property or money through materially fraudulent or false pretenses, promises, or representations;
- With the intent to cheat, deceive, or defraud; and
- Used or caused a wire communication to be used to carry out the fraudulent act.
Penalties for Mail Fraud and Wire Fraud
The penalties for mail fraud and wire fraud depend on the specific situation, including the intended victim and the value of the fraud. In addition, these types of cases often involve other criminal charges that carry additional criminal penalties. In the majority of cases, a conviction for mail fraud or wire fraud results in jail time, heavy fines, probation, civil penalties, and restitution to the victims of the fraud. Specifically, a conviction for either of these crimes can result in up to 20 years’ imprisonment and up to $250,000 in fines.
Contact a Virginia Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you have been charged with mail fraud or wire fraud in the state of Virginia, you need a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney in your corner. At Walker Jones, PC, our experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense lawyers have what it takes to successfully defend clients against criminal charges of all kinds in the state of Virginia. When you come to us for assistance with your case, we will mount an aggressive defense on your behalf and do everything possible to obtain a successful result in your Virginia mail fraud or wire fraud case. Please contact us to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable criminal defense lawyers.
Posted in: White Collar Crime