Fraud Defense Attorney in Denver, CO
What Constitutes Fraud in Colorado?
The State of Colorado is very specific in defining fraud. According to the Office of the State Auditor, fraud is when you willingly and knowingly conceal or misrepresent information for your gain and cause injury to others. Injury is defined as a loss, which can include when a person loses money. One of the most prominent examples of fraud is if you were to steal another person’s financial information and spend money using their bank accounts or credit cards, for example.
Fraud comes in many forms. To bring criminal fraud charges, the prosecution must prove that a defendant intended to misrepresent themself to steal money, ruin another person’s reputation, avoid paying taxes or keep information hidden from government agencies.
What are the Different Types of Fraud Crimes?
There is a wide range of fraud crimes which include the following:
- Mail Fraud
- Identity Theft
- Money Laundering
- Credit Card Fraud
- Tax Fraud
- Wire Fraud
- False Representation
- Bank Fraud
- Internet Fraud
- Insurance Fraud
- Corporate Fraud
Fraud falls under several categories in the eyes of the state, and it’s important to understand how Colorado views fraud if you’re being charged with a crime.
This type of fraud is usually committed at the corporate or government level. It includes delivering false expense reports, inaccurately reporting travel expenses, stealing cash from your employer, and manipulating time clocks to over-report hours worked.
Financial fraud occurs when you misrepresent yourself for financial gain. These crimes include credit card fraud, insurance fraud, and bribery. At a government level, it could include taking bribes or directing funding to friends or family members in return for personal favors.
Corruption charges are filed if you’re suspected of using your position to gain a financial advantage, such as involving yourself in financial decisions when there’s a conflict of interest. It also includes money laundering, extortion, tax fraud, and insurance fraud.
Laundering money is a complex way to ensure that money someone has made illegally appears as if it came from legitimate sources. People who launder money may clean it by reporting it as income through a legitimate business that accepts cash transactions. The source of the income is misrepresented, classifying these actions as a form of fraud.
Identity theft may involve multiple crimes, including mail fraud, where criminals steal victims’ mail to obtain the information they can use to access things like bank accounts, Social Security information, and more. An identity thief commits fraud by taking out new loans or opening bank accounts in the victim’s name.
What are the Charges and Penalties for Fraud?
The severity of penalties for a criminal fraud conviction varies based on the details of the crime. Those accused of fraud may also be charged with additional crimes. There are several potential outcomes if you’re convicted of fraud.
Class 1 Misdemeanor
If convicted of a Class 1 Misdemeanor fraud charge, you could receive a jail sentence of up to 18 months and pay up to $5,000 in fines.
Class 6 Felony
Felony fraud charges are much more serious and come with harsher penalties. A Class 6 Felony is punishable by up to 18 months in prison and $100,000 in fines.
Class 5 Felony
Class 5 Felony fraud usually involves identity theft, insurance fraud, or embezzlement of money worth up to $20,000. A conviction may result in up to 3 years in jail and $100,000 in fines.
Class 4 Felony
Some identity theft crimes and more serious insurance or bank fraud cases are tried as Class 4 Felonies. The sentence for a Class 4 Felony fraud charge is up to 6 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines.
Class 3 Felony
The most serious fraud cases are tried as Class 3 felonies and include money laundering, extensive identity theft, embezzlement, and extortion. The financial losses incurred due to fraud must exceed $20,000 for the prosecution to seek a Class 3 Felony fraud charge.
Why Hire G Law Defense?
If you’ve been charged with a crime, contact us immediately for a private consultation. Our criminal defense attorneys can help you determine the best way to avoid extreme penalties and a hefty jail sentence by working with the prosecution to secure better terms or prepare an appropriate defense on your behalf.
Each of our criminal fraud defense attorneys has extensive experience and legal knowledge. Give us a call to arrange a free consultation.