Credit card fraud can generally be broken down into either “card present” schemes, or “card not present” schemes. As the name would suggest, “card present” crimes involve physically stealing a credit card belonging to someone else. On the other hand, “card not present crimes” need not involve physical possession of a credit card. This category includes a wide range of activities, including using skimming devices or phishing websites to record card numbers to later use for purchases over the phone or online. As card not present schemes take place in the virtual domain, they are usually more difficult for victims and law enforcement to discover. If you are under scrutiny for credit card fraud of any kind, you must speak to a defense attorney right away.
Credit card fraud under federal U.S. law is defined as using, attempting to use, or conspiring to use “any counterfeit, fictitious, altered, forged, lost, stolen, or fraudulently obtained credit card” in order to get anything of value, including money, good, or services. If the value of the goods obtained adds up to more than $1,000 within a year, you can face a punishment of up to 10 years in federal prison, a fine of $10,000, or both.
Credit Card Fraud Under Illinois State Law
Under Illinois’ Credit and Debit Card Fraud law, many acts are declared unlawful, including:
- Making a false statement in order to procure a debit or credit card;
- Possessing someone else’s credit or debit card;
- Keeping a lost credit card with the intent to use or sell it;
- Buying goods with a stolen credit card; and
- Using a counterfeit credit card.
This list is far from exhaustive. There are many other ways to run afoul of the Credit and Debit Card Fraud Act. Each type of violation carries a different sentence, defensing on the seriousness of the crime. A knowledgeable Chicago-area defense attorney will be able to advise you on how a given offense would be treated under the state law.
Credit Card Fraud Defense Attorney
An arrest or conviction for a white collar crime can lead to monetary fines and prison sentences. In addition, the negative impact on your reputation can punish you for years after you have paid your debt to society. If you are facing charges or an investigation for credit card fraud, contact the law office of Goldman & Associates today for aggressive representation by a dedicated Illinois defense attorney.