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Charles Magill

Fresno Defense Attorneys | Fresno Criminal Defense | Central Valley Criminal Defense Law Firm

Fraud

Fresno Criminal Fraud Lawyer

Being charged with criminal fraud and other white-collar crimes can result in serious consequences, requiring the expertise of a Fresno criminal defense attorney.

The term “fraud” may refer to a varied range of wrongful conduct. Most fraud is not serious enough to be a crime and can be handled by the injured party suing the wrongdoer in court to recover any monetary damages resulting from the fraud.  Criminal fraud charges are brought by the government for the violation of a state or federal criminal fraud statute.

The goal of a civil fraud case is to compensate the plaintiff for his financial or property loss and includes such wrongful actions as intentional misrepresentation, negligent misrepresentation, concealment and false promise.  Any monetary damages awarded go in a civil lawsuit goes to the victim.

The goal of a criminal fraud case is to punish the wrongdoer for violating a criminal statute.  This may result in imprisonment or heavy fines.  Unlike in a civil fraud case, any fines recovered are paid to the government, not the victim.  While a criminal court may order restitution to the victim, the primary goal of a criminal case is still to punish the wrongdoer, not compensate the victim.  Many of these cases are governed by federal law.   Fraud cases that end up before Fresno criminal defense lawyers may involve everything mail fraud to bank fraud.

Types of Criminal Fraud

Mail Fraud

Mail fraud is the most common type of fraud charge brought in the United States. Two conditions must be met for a mail fraud conviction:

  • There must be a scheme that is designed to defraud.
  • The fraudulent scheme must be conducted using the US Mail.

The definition of mail fraud is so broad that it covers a wide range of activities.  Some of the more common types of mail fraud include credit card fraud, securities fraud, and Medicare fraud.

Wire Fraud

Wire fraud involves the use of electronic devices including the radio, television, telephone, Internet and fax machines to defraud. The transmittal of information over these media must be interstate or foreign, for it to qualify as wire fraud. While activities leading to a mail fraud charge may be intrastate (all the wrongdoing occurred within a single state’s borders), wire fraud includes only interstate conduct.

Bank Fraud

As the name suggests, bank fraud involves criminal activity that is designed to defraud a bank or any other financial institution. For bank fraud charges to be brought against you, it is not necessary that major embezzlement activity be involved.  Any fraudulent activity related to a federal financial institution, of any amount, is sufficient to support bank fraud charges.

Whether you have been accused of wire fraud, mail fraud, bank fraud, credit card fraud or any other fraudulent activities, you could be looking at serious federal crimes and white-collar crimes charges. It's important to speak with an experienced Fresno fraud defense lawyer in order to protect your legal rights.