Because federal prosecutors possess immense resources, facing fraud charges can be intimidating, and the stakes are high. If convicted, you could face crippling fines or even lose your freedom. Fortunately, a Fort Worth federal fraud lawyer may be able to help.
Your freedom is precious, and a fraud conviction could affect your reputation and limit your opportunities in the future. The best way to build a credible defense is with help from an experienced defense attorney.
Types of Fraud Handled at the Federal Level
Fraud is an intentional act of misrepresentation or trickery that is meant to benefit the actor. While some fraud could fall under either federal or state law, certain acts are handled exclusively on the federal level.
Mail and Wire Fraud
Mail and wire fraud occur when a person conducts a fraudulent scheme using the US Postal Service or any type of wire communication, such as a phone call. For example, if a person bribes a government official or tricks people into giving them money over the phone, the government may pursue charges of mail and wire fraud along with other crimes.
Medicare and Medicaid Fraud
Medicare and Medicaid are health insurance programs run by the federal government. If a person makes a false claim to these insurers, federal prosecutors may pursue fraud charges against them.
The federal government regulates securities and other markets. This means that attempts to defraud people involving securities, foreign currency, investment schemes, pyramid schemes, and other acts are federal crimes. If a person tries to trick someone into investing based on false information or engages in insider trading, the federal government may attempt to prosecute that person.
If a person attempts to avoid paying taxes by lying on tax returns or failing to file, they may be charged with tax fraud. The IRS vigorously investigates tax fraud, as it currently costs the government billions in unpaid income taxes each year.
Potential Penalties for Federal Fraud
Most of the acts described above are felonies, but although some examples of fraud could be charged as misdemeanors. A misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in prison, but defendants could receive a lesser sentence. In contrast, certain acts of felony fraud could lead to much more severe sanctions, such as 30 years in prison.
Defendants also face the possibility of heavy fines. For example, an act of wire fraud may result in a $250,000 fine. When companies engage in fraud rather than individuals, the penalties may be in the millions.
Speak with a Fort Worth Federal Fraud Attorney
If you are concerned about possible federal fraud charges, you may wish to enlist the help of an experienced legal representative. Federal cases involve unique processes and procedures, and you need someone who understands the system and can navigate the courts. Sit down with a Fort Worth federal fraud lawyer to learn more about your charges and how you can most effectively combat them. Call today to schedule a consultation and begin working towards a positive outcome to your case.