Credit card fraud is very common in Florida and across the nation and is one of the most commonly committed fraud offenses. Though not a violent crime, being convicted of the fraudulent use of a credit card can carry serious charges, depending on the circumstances of the crime.
According to Florida Statutes Title XLVI, Section 817, any person who uses a credit card that he or she knows is forged or was obtained or retained in violation of this section with the intent to defraud a person, or issuer or organization providing goods, money, services, or anything else of value, in order to obtain such goods, money, services or other things of value without the consent of the cardholder, is guilty of the crime of fraudulent use of credit cards. The person is subject to the following penalties:
- If the person uses a credit card in violation of the above section two times or less within a six month period and the value is less than $100, he or she is guilty of a misdemeanor in the first degree punishable by a maximum one year imprisonment and/or a $1,000 fine. If the value is $100 or more, the crime will be considered a third degree felony.
- If the person uses a credit card in violation of the above section more than two times within a six month period, then he or she is guilty of a felony in the third degree and punishable by a maximum five years imprisonment and/or a maximum $5,000 fine.
In order to prove that a person is guilty of fraudulently using a credit card, the prosecution would need to provide evidence demonstrating that the suspect did so with intent to defraud, knowing that the credit card was forged or otherwise illegal, while falsely representing the cardholder and/or without the consent of the cardholder. Oftentimes, a person believes he or she was given permission to use a certain credit card or believes that the credit card in his or her possession is genuine, resulting in much surprise and confusion when he or she is accused of fraudulently using the card. An experienced criminal defense attorney can uncover such misunderstandings.
If you have been accused of credit card fraud, the aggressive Florida fraud defense lawyers at Musca Law can help you fight any unlawful charges or penalties. To speak to one of our attorneys about your particular case, contact us today at (800) 687-2252 for a confidential consultation.