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What is wire fraud?

Posted By: On behalf of J. Kevin Stockstill, Attorney At Law // On:

Most people are familiar with the terms wire fraud and spam email but may wonder, in particular, what wire fraud refers to. In general, there are a variety of different forms of fraud that an individual can be charged with. Specifically, however, scams that occur over interstate wires, which can include telemarketing fraud, phishing scams or spam-related email schemes, are referred to as wire fraud.

Wire fraud is similar in nature to fraud charges, however, wire fraud takes placing using phone lines or electronic communications. The elements of a wire crime include that the accused individual created or participated in a scheme to defraud another out of money; the accused individual acted with the intent to defraud; it was reasonably foreseeable that the accused individual would use wire communications; and that the accused individual did, in fact, use wire communications.

Interstate wire communications can refer to phone calls, electronic communications using the fax, internet or even a television. Regardless of the type of fraud charges the accused individual is facing, all fraud charges are serious. The penalties and consequences for the accused individual can be significant. As a result, prosecutors are held to a high standard of proof as to each of the elements of a wire fraud charge. If the prosecutor has failed to prove those elements, or has in some way violated the rights of the accused individual, it may for the basis for a criminal defense response.

Accused individuals have important criminal defense rights and protections available through the criminal justice system when facing any type of criminal charges. It is important for accused individuals to be familiar with these rights and protections so they are able to exercise them and know how to protect themselves.

Source: Criminal.findlaw.com, "Wire Fraud," Accessed March 29, 2017

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