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Defending Against Federal Identity Theft Accusations

 Posted on June 13, 2024 in Identity Theft

Chicago criminal defense lawyerIf you face federal charges related to identity theft, the road ahead may seem like it is too much to bear. Identity theft is a serious crime that can carry potentially severe penalties under federal law. However, you do not have to face this difficult situation alone. An Illinois lawyer can provide the strong, strategic defense you need and protect your rights every step of the way.

What You Should First Know About Federal Identity Theft Charges

Identity theft happens when an individual uses someone else's personal information, like personal Security number or credit card details, without consent to engage in fraudulent activities or other criminal acts. While many identity theft cases are prosecuted at the state level, identity theft becomes a federal offense when it involves certain aggravating factors, such as:

What is Considered Federal Credit Card Fraud?

 Posted on June 10, 2024 in Federal Crimes

Chicago criminal defense lawyerCommitting credit card fraud is a significant crime that carries severe consequences. You could face hefty fines and extended imprisonment. An Illinois lawyer can help you understand what constitutes federal credit card fraud and the potential consequences for those convicted.

What Exactly is Federal Credit Card Fraud?

Federal credit card fraud occurs when an individual knowingly intending to defraud uses, attempts to use, or conspires to use a counterfeit, altered, forged, lost, stolen, or fraudulently obtained credit card. It also includes the unauthorized use of a credit card obtained through fraudulent means, such as identity theft. Credit card fraud is a federal charge when the fraudulent activity crosses state lines or international borders. For example, if you stole someone’s credit card in Illinois to make online purchases at a retailer in Florida, this turns into federal credit card fraud.

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What Is Federal Mortgage Fraud and What Are the Penalties?

 Posted on May 30, 2024 in Mortgage fraud

IL defense lawyerThere are several types of fraud that are considered white-collar crimes. What they share in common is the fact that the person committing them misrepresents the truth, leaves out some important facts, or engages in otherwise fraudulent behavior. One specific type that we will examine today is mortgage fraud. When someone acts fraudulently during a mortgage transaction that affects financial institutions that are federally insured, mortgage fraud becomes a federal crime. The severe implications of a mortgage fraud conviction include heavy fines and long prison sentences. If you are facing federal mortgage fraud charges, speak with a qualified Chicago, IL mortgage fraud defense attorney who can protect your rights, explain your options, and build a strong defense.

When Is Mortgage Fraud a Federal Crime?

When the alleged behavior affects the government, it becomes a federal offense. That means the fraud could involve FHA-insured loans, VA loans, or other federally insured financial arrangements. Depending on the specifics of the case, federal mortgage fraud might also involve bank, mail, wire, or securities fraud.

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What to Know about Federal Marijuana Charges

 Posted on May 21, 2024 in Drug Crimes

IL defense lawyerMost people are aware that marijuana has been treated by law enforcement officials as an illegal drug for quite a while. A fairly new challenge in recent years is related to what happens when something is considered legal in a state but still considered an illegal drug according to federal law. Specifically, marijuana has been legalized in the state of Illinois, but possession of it remains a federal offense. This discrepancy has caused a great deal of confusion and unexpected implications. This article will explain a bit about marijuana-related laws in Illinois and how you might get into trouble with federal law. Of course, if you are concerned that you might be in legal trouble, speak with a skilled Chicago, IL criminal defense attorney who can review your case and offer you sound advice.

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Charges for Various Types of Federal Fraud

 Posted on May 10, 2024 in Fraud

IL defense lawyerThere are laws protecting individuals, organizations, and businesses from suffering financially as a result of someone else’s false claims. The United States federal government takes accusations of fraud very seriously. A wide variety of actions can be included under the umbrella category of “federal fraud” and can result in a wide range of penalties and sentences. If you are concerned that you might be accused of federal fraud, speak with a skilled Chicago, IL federal fraud lawyer to review your options.

Wire Fraud, Bank Fraud, and Mail Fraud

Three types of fraud can be punished with up to a $1,000,000 fine and up to 30 years in prison. These include:

  • Wire fraud: When you conduct fraud by wire, radio, or television. Additionally, there is no federal law specifically addressing mortgage fraud, so that type of offense is often prosecuted as wire fraud.
  • Bank fraud: Deceiving banks and other financial institutions

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Federal Hate Crimes

 Posted on May 08, 2024 in Hate Crime Statute

IL defense lawyerSimply put, a hate crime happens when both hate and crime are involved, but those two terms have specific definitions in the context of a hate crime, which will be explained below. However, since America grants its citizens the right to free speech and freedom of religion, the topic of hate crimes can be confusing. You might feel threatened by someone else’s beliefs or actions, which can feel directed against your religion. However, if you act to defend yourself against what you perceive as threatening actions, you might find yourself facing an accusation of hate crimes yourself. The possibility of a federal hate crime conviction can make you afraid, anxious, and stressed. If you are accused of a federal hate crime, speak with an experienced Chicago, IL hate crime defense attorney to understand what options you have.

What is Considered “Hate”

When used to characterize a type of crime, “hate” does not mean strong dislike or the opposite of like or love the way it does outside of a legal context, but rather it refers to a bias against people who share some characteristics. Most states define hate crimes as those committed on the basis of the perceived or actual sexual orientation, religion, race, nationality, gender, gender identity, or disability of the target.

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Is Imprisonment Possible for Federal White-Collar Crimes?

 Posted on April 25, 2024 in Fraud

Illinois federal criminal defense attorneyCharacterized as crimes committed by businesspersons and politicians, a white-collar crime is a non-violent offense that generally has a financial motive. Although white-collar crimes account for only 3% of federal prosecutions, a conviction carries severe penalties, including imprisonment, fines, or potentially both. 

If you are facing accusations of a white-collar crime, you need to speak with our Chicago white-collar crime defense attorney immediately.

Wire Fraud

The offense of using electronic communications to defraud someone else is known as wire fraud. To be charged at the federal level, the following elements must be satisfied:

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Federal Identity Theft Charges

 Posted on April 18, 2024 in Identity Theft

Chicago,Identity theft is a growing concern in our country and the federal government comes down harshly on offenders. Even minimum penalties for a federal offense are severe.

Identity theft charges must be dealt with immediately. If you suspect that you are under federal investigation for identity theft or have already been formally charged, you need to speak with a Chicago identity theft lawyer today. 

Overview of Identity Theft 

Federal law makes it a crime to steal and use another person’s personal data for economic gain through fraud or deception. Identity theft can involve taking a personal identification document, falsifying a document, or retrieving someone’s personal data.

While the majority of identity theft cases are prosecuted in state court, the federal government may prosecute an offender if the person is stealing large sums of money or numerous victims are involved. 

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Should You Answer Questions by Federal Officers?

 Posted on April 11, 2024 in Federal Crimes

Chicago, IL criminal defense lawyerYou have the right to remain silent. Many people know this, but few choose to exercise this right. If an FBI agent is questioning you, you may think that it looks suspicious if you choose not to answer their questions.

Federal officers operate by pressuring people to cooperate. Before you answer questions from an FBI agent or any federal agent, it is important that you consult with a Chicago federal criminal lawyer.

What Types of Federal Officers May Question Me?

The type of federal officers that will question you depends largely on the charges you are up against. If you are under investigation for a federal crime, officers from any of the following federal agencies have the right to question you:

How Does Federal Bail and Pretrial Release Work?

 Posted on April 04, 2024 in Federal Crimes

Chicago, IL criminal defense attorneyIf you have been arrested for a crime, you will be held in police custody until you appear before a judge. While if you were arrested for a state crime you would be released on bail, the federal court system has pretrial release for criminal defendants.

If you have been arrested for a federal crime, the first call you make should be to a Chicago federal criminal lawyer.  

Overview of Pretrial Release

Our legal system is based upon the presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty. Unless there is a reason to detain a defendant, the federal court system will release an individual prior to trial. 

The pretrial release program does not use bail, bonds, or bondsmen. Rather, a federal judge has to decide whether to release or detain a defendant following their arrest. A judge has the option to grant any of the following:

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