Some people have, at one time or another, received a spam email or an unsolicited letter that seemed a little suspicious. However, most may not realize that these messages may have been part of a scam to commit a crime known as money transfer fraud. This type of fraud charge occurs when a person obtains money from someone else under false pretenses. For example, if someone pretends to be a representative for a charity or benefit fund and obtains “donations” from others, that person has committed money transfer fraud.
Penalties for Money Transfer Fraud
The punishments associated with money transfer fraud schemes are generally quite severe, especially if money is transferred across state lines. Such transfers constitute a federal offense. If fraud is suspected, law enforcement officials can obtain a search warrant that will allow them access to anything that might produce evidence. If someone has been charged with this kind of fraud, their house and their belongings can become subject for inspection. Law enforcement may seize computers, hard drives, communications records and cash or other financial assets. If convicted, these assets will be considered forfeit, and the defendant could face years in prison and massive fines.
Defending Against Money Transfer Scam Charges
Defending against a charge of money transfer fraud is a meticulous and painstaking process. Only a money transfer fraud attorney who has experience in handling cases of this kind should be consulted with. A defense against charges can be constructed in several ways:
- Protocol enforcement: If a police officer, detective or a special investigator makes a single mistake and violates legal protocol for gathering evidence, the money transfer fraud attorney can have evidence deemed inadmissible. This could cause the prosecution’s case to crumble.
- Evidence validity: The defense attorney can question each piece of evidence to see if it is legally viable and admissible in court. Any evidence that cannot be verified as a valid aspect of the case could be tossed out.
- Evidence matching: Any alleged evidence that is obtained by the prosecution must be demonstrably linked to the defendant. If the link is circumstantial, incomplete or unverifiable, the evidence cannot be used to secure a conviction.
Call a Houston Money Transfer Fraud Attorney
When someone is charged with money transfer fraud, their first step should be to contact a criminal attorney who has experience defending clients who are accused of this type of fraud. There is no room for errors in these cases; you need a lawyer who can provide you with the best legal advice and representation. To start planning your defense against money transfer fraud accusations, sit down with attorney James Alston.
Get your questions answered - call me for your free telephone consultation at (713) 228-1400