Mail Fraud is one of the most commonly charged white collar federal offenses. Mail Fraud makes it illegal for an individual to use the U.S. Postal Service, or other mail carrier, during the course of a scheme to take money from another unlawfully.
One of the most severe non-violent federal crimes, a mail fraud conviction can lead to decade in prison. A common misconception about mail fraud is the belief that the lie or fraud itself must involve the mail. In reality, all that must be proven is that the mail was used or caused to be used during the course of the fraud – any innocent or otherwise innocuous mailing can bring the crime within federal jurisdiction. Hence, while you may believe your conduct is relatively harmless, once you use a mail service to carry out at least part of a criminal fraud scheme, federal agents and prosecutors have the authority to charge you pursuant to the mail fraud statute, codified by 18 U.S.C. § 1341.
Wire Fraud is another common white collar federal fraud charge and is codified by 18 U.S.C. § 1343. This statute makes it illegal for an individual to use a wire, radio, or television communication for the purposes of carrying out a scheme or to defraud or to obtain money by false or fraudulent pretenses. Like mail fraud, wire fraud can lead to a severe prison sentence if a conviction occurs. Most frequently, wire fraud is charged where an individual uses modern forms of communication, such as text message, email, phone calls, and social media in order to defraud another for monetary gain.
Notably, not all misrepresentations and lies are enforced equally. Rather, the fraudulent conveyance pursuant to this statute must encompass a material misrepresentation. Hence, the misrepresentation must be related to the fraudulent scheme in a specific manner.
Being charged with either mail or wire fraud is extremely serious and requires an experience federal defense attorney to find creative solutions to successfully against these accusations. Above all else, a fruitful defense will aim to show that the method alleged to be used, whether it be by wire or by mail, was not an integral part in carrying out the underlying fraudulent scheme that the government based its indictment on.
If you are accused of mail or wire fraud, hire a former prosecutor and preeminent criminal defense attorney who has dealt with these offenses on both sides of the courtroom. The steps your defense attorney takes, by way of investigation and creative advocacy, will increase your chances of successfully walking away from these accusations and shaping the rest of your life. Contact Jason Goldman Law for an experienced criminal defense lawyer that can assist you.
The sooner you put your case in the hands of an experienced criminal defense lawyer, the more opportunity you will have to work toward a favorable outcome.