The growth of technology has also resulted in new ways for crimes to be committed. Credit card fraud is one of these areas. The Sun-Sentinel reported on the increase in credit card fraud in Florida and the rise of black market credit cards. These counterfeit cards are becoming increasingly common as hackers are finding new ways to access credit card information. The article identifies Florida as the headquarters for people who make counterfeit credit cards.
Another new technology that people have been using includes credit card “skimmers” that are attached to ATMs or other credit card swiping devices. The skimmers read the information of the cards that are inserted or swiped and then people will use that information to make illegal cards.
The State Credit Card Crime Act
Under Florida law, there are many kinds of credit card fraud that are charged under the State Credit Card Crime Act. Some credit card fraud can be charged under this Act, but can also be charged under state laws for theft.
Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards
The fraudulent use of credit cards is illegal under Florida law. This statute focuses on specific kinds of credit card fraud.
Fraudulent use of credit cards is defined as when someone uses a credit card with an intent to commit fraud against a merchant. The person using the card needs to know that the card was forged, or that it was unlawfully obtained. People can also be convicted of fraudulent use of credit cards when they try to use a credit card and pretend that they have permission from the actual owner to use it, but they in fact do not have that permission. Finally, in order to be convicted of fraudulent use of credit cards the prosecution must also prove that the defendant used the card to obtain money, services, goods or other things of value.
A charge of fraudulent use of credit cards covers a six-month period of using that credit card. So no matter how many times a person fraudulently uses a credit card within a six-month period, it is just one charge. However, since the penalties for this crime are affected by the value or good fraudulently obtained and the number of times the credit card is used, it will ultimately be relevant how many times it was used.
Fraudulent use of credit cards is a misdemeanor or a felony. It is a felony if the card was used more than two times and/or the value of goods was over $100. If it is below these numbers and amounts it is a misdemeanor. Felony fraudulent use of credit cards is punishable by up to five years in prison and/or up to $5,000 in fines.
West Palm Beach Fraud Defense Attorneys
If you are charged with credit card fraud or other kinds of economic crimes, it is important that you have a knowledgeable fraud and economic crime defense attorneys on your side to help defend you against the charges. Our experienced fraud defense attorneys at The Skier Law Firm, P.A. in West Palm Beach, Florida can zealously defend you against fraud and other economic crimes charges.