New York Identity Theft Crime Defense Lawyer
Identity theft is a white-collar crime that involves the use of fraudulent means to obtain and use another person’s personal information. It’s become commonplace in recent years for customers to see their credit card or banking information stolen and used without authorization, or personal information utilized after online “dumps.” Although identity theft is typically a non-violent crime, New York and federal prosecutors have made moves to crack down on the practice, and the punishments can be harsh. Even when the alleged crime involved relatively low monetary amounts, a defendant charged with identity theft can be convicted of a felony and face significant prison time.
If you’ve been arrested for identity theft or other forms of fraud in New York, you need an experienced white-collar criminal defense lawyer in your corner as soon as possible. With help from a seasoned New York criminal defense attorney at Dupée & Monroe, P.C., you can avoid the worst possible consequences of an aggravated identity theft charge. Call us after your arrest or when you learn you are under investigation so that we can start building your defense and protecting your future today.
Defining Identity Theft Under New York Law
There are multiple degrees of identity theft under the New York Penal Law, depending on the amount of money involved and other factors. NYPL sections 190.78, 190.79, 190.80, and 190.80-A cover the various degrees of identity theft. According to the law, the crimes are defined as follows:
- Identity Theft in the Third Degree. The base level of identity theft occurs when someone uses a false identity or another person’s credit card to obtain money, goods, or services, to the detriment of another person.
- Identity Theft in the Second Degree. The second level of identity theft occurs when someone uses a false identity to obtain money, goods, or services, to the detriment of another person, and the amount involved or harm caused exceeds $500. A Second-Degree offense also applies when the defendant commits or attempts to commit a felony by way of identity theft.
- Identity Theft in the First Degree. The next level of identity theft occurs when someone uses a false identity to obtain money, goods, or services, to the detriment of another person, and the amount involved or harm caused exceeds $2,000. First-degree also applies when the defendant commits or attempts to commit a class D felony or higher by way of identity theft.
- Aggravated Identity Theft. When the defendant committed the predicate acts for a Second-Degree identity theft charge and the victim was a deployed member of the armed services, the defendant can be charged with Aggravated Identity Theft, which elevates the charge to the level of First Degree.
Penalties for Identity Theft
The potential punishments for identity theft are as follows:
- Identity Theft in the Third Degree is a Class A Misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail.
- Identity Theft in the Second Degree is a Class E Felony, punishable by 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison.
- Identity Theft in the First Degree is a Class D Felony, punishable by up to seven years in prison.
- Aggravated Identity Theft is a Class D Felony, punishable by up to seven years in prison.
Other factors, such as prior convictions, may trigger higher-level charges and more stringent penalties. If you are under investigation for or have been charged with any level of identity theft in New York, it’s imperative that you speak with an educated New York criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. At Dupée & Monroe, our identity theft and fraud legal team will make sure that you get the best possible defense.
Seasoned Legal Help is Available for Identity Theft Charges from Our Hudson Valley Criminal Defense Lawyers
If you have been arrested and charged with identity theft or fraud under New York state law, contact Dupée & Monroe, P.C. for an identity theft defense lawyer in Goshen. We represent clients charged with identity theft and other serious offenses in Orange County and throughout the Hudson Valley.