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By Benson Varghese

Published on: April 2nd, 2020 at 2:20 PM
Last Updated: September 10th, 2020 at 2:36 PM

Facing a fraud charge? It’s imperative to start building a strong legal defense right away. Not only can fraud charges carry stiff penalties, but they can damage your professional and personal reputation. A Fort Worth fraud lawyer will be your best advocate as you navigate the complex criminal justice system. We can help.

Fraud charges can be complicated and paper-intensive. Our  experienced criminal defense attorneys will conduct a comprehensive investigation of the prosecution’s case against you and locate any legal issues that will work in your favor. We will work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.

What are Common Examples of Fraud in Fort Worth?

A wide range of offenses could constitute fraud under Texas law. The act of fraud involves someone using trickery or deception to obtain something of value, such as money or property.

Below are some common examples of offenses which may be classified as fraud:

  1. Credit card/Debit Card Fraud or Abuse
  2. Bank fraud
  3. Wire fraud
  4. Check fraud and check kiting
  5. Forgery
  6. Counterfeiting real estate deeds
  7. Insurance Fraud
  8. Medicaid Fraud
  9. Medicare Fraud
  10. Healthcare Fraud
  11. Identity Fraud
  12. Misappropriation
  13. Tax Fraud
  14. Counterfeiting
  15. Criminal Simulation (for example, creating a fake antique)
  16. Counterfeiting Trademarks
  17. Stealing or receiving stolen checks
  18. Fraudulent use or possession of credit card / debit card information
  19. False statements to obtain credit
  20. Hindering a Secured Creditor
  21. Bankruptcy Fraud
  22. Fraudulent Transfer of a Motor Vehicle
  23. Commercial Bribery
  24. Contest Rigging
  25. Illegal Recruitment of an Athlete
  26. Securing the Execution of a Document by Deception
  27. Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of a Writing (Switching tags)
  28. Falsifying Degrees
  29. Falsifying a Military Record
  30. Contractor Fraud

Our team of Fort Worth fraud lawyers are experienced at defending fraud accusations in north Texas.

What is the Penalty for a Fraud Conviction?

The  punishment for a fraud conviction depends on whether the crime is a misdemeanor or felony. The nature of the fraud, value of the property, and age of the alleged victim dictate the severity of the charge. The punishment range often follows the Texas theft value ladder:

ValueOffense LevelPunishment Range
Under $100Class CUp to $500 fine
$100 – $750Class BUp to 180 days in jail
$750- $2,500Class A Up to 1 year in jail
$2,500 – $30,000State Jail180 days – 2 years in State Jail
$30,000-$150,000Third Degree 2-10 years in prison
$150,000-$300,000Second Degree 2-20 years in prison
Upwards of $300,000First Degree 5-99 years/life

 

Fraud Enhancements in Texas

Enhancements also exist based on the characteristics of the victim. For example alleging a victim was elderly (even if the accused did not know it) can increase the offense level by one degree.

Aggregation in Texas Fraud Cases

If the state alleges that money was obtained in a “continuing course of conduct” or as part of a scheme, regardless of the number of victims, the amounts can be aggregated.

Subsequent Offenses for Repeat or Habitual Offenders

Individuals who have previously been convicted of felonies face much harsher punishments than first-time offenders. For example, someone who is charged with a state jail felony and has been convicted twice before of a state jail felony conviction face a third-degree felony punishable of two to 10 years in prison. Someone convicted of a felony (other than  a state jail felony) with two previous felony convictions could face a minimum of 25 years in prison and a maximum sentence of lifetime incarceration.

Discuss Your Case Today with a Fort Worth Fraud Attorney

Not only can a fraud conviction  leave you with a permanent criminal record, but it could impact your family, finances, and freedom. Leave nothing to chance. Contact an experienced Fort Worth fraud lawyer today.

Our team will give your case the full attention it deserves and work hard to mitigate the criminal accusations against you. To schedule your consultation, call now.