Virginia law dedicates an entire chapter of its criminal law to crimes of fraud. Fraud has many forms. Crimes involving fraud have as a common element the specific intent to deceive the victim or trick the victim in some way.
Fraud is a general term for numerous crimes in Virginia. Crimes involving fraud may be grouped into smaller categories. They are:
- Writing bad checks,
- False representations to obtain something of value
- Fraud regarding communication devices,
- Credit card fraud and theft,
- Fraud relating to business and personal relationships,
- Intentional misrepresentations in the sales of goods and other items,
- Money laundering, and
- Fraud in cigarette sales.
Some crimes involving fraud are more prevalent than others. For example, forgery is a common form of fraud. Forgery is passing a false signature on an official document or otherwise passing a copy off as an original, such as a work of art. Forgery is commonly accompanied by uttering. Uttering is the passing of a forged document. A common example of forgery and uttering is a person who has forged an endorsement on a personal check will “utter” the check by trying to cash it at a bank. Forgery can also involve passing counterfeit money. Forgery is often punished as a Class 5 felony.
Other Forms Of Fraud
Impersonating a police officer or other emergency personnel is a crime in Virginia. A crime involving fraud has also been committed if a person falsifies his or her military status to obtain some benefit conferred by the government. Military status can refer to the status as active or inactive, or how a person separated from the military. Additionally, military status refers to falsely claiming receipt of medals and military awards with intent to obtain a benefit.
Fraud in Virginia involves writing bad checks. Sometimes people make a mistake and “bounce” a check. That happens regularly. There is no crime committed if the person who cashed the check receives the funds intended. A crime occurs when the person who wrote the bad check never intends to fund the account. One common example is writing checks on a closed account. That check cannot be funded and that fact is evidence of the check writer’s intent to defraud the recipient of the check.
Fraud can also occur in obtaining a marriage license, obtaining money or signatures by misrepresentation, lying to become qualified for a credit card, credit card fraud, using a credit card or debit card skimming device, identity theft, defrauding the purchaser of a motor vehicle or boat, false advertising, and the like.
Why You Should Not Handle Your Fraud Charges On Your Own
Some people may think that a fraud charge is not serious. However, even being charged with an offense involving fraud or deceit could have substantial collateral consequences. Not only could you go to jail, but you may also have to disclose on a job application, loan application, or application for benefits that you have been charged with a crime involving fraud. Those stakes are simply too high.
Count On Virginia Beach Criminal Defense Attorney Patricia Hardt to Fight On Your Behalf
Virginia Beach criminal defense attorney Patricia Hardt has substantial experience defending people accused of crimes involving fraud or deceit. Call Attorney Hardt today at 757-962-5588 to make an appointment for a case review.