Credit Card Theft Attorneys in New Jersey
Credit Card Theft Attorneys in New Jersey
There a variety of complex crimes the State of New Jersey may charge an individual with involving Credit Card Fraud. These charges include:
- Making False Statements to Procure Issuance of a Credit Card;
- Use of a Credit Card Knowing it has been Revoked, Forged or Expired;
- Fraud Committed by the Provider of Money, Goods or Services;
- Receipt of Anything of Value as a Result of Credit Card Fraud; and
- Fraudulent Use of a Credit Card.
Each one of these respective offenses is unpacked individually below. Spodek Law Group breaks down the elements and penalties associated with each for you in this article. Dependent upon the circumstances, the offense will either be an offense of the third or fourth degree. If you get convicted, you could face up to five (5) years in prison. That said, what may arise from a harmless mistake could result in an indictable offense before the Superior Court in your county. The team of New Jersey credit card theft defense attorneys at Spodek Law Group has the skill set and knowledge to successfully represent you in your matter. Our attorneys will put your interest at the forefront and take the steps necessary to keep you out of jail. For immediate assistance with your pending charges, reach out to our attorneys right away. Your first consultation is always provided free of charge.
Making False Statements to Procure Issuance of a Credit Card in New Jersey
According to N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(b), it is a fourth degree crime to Make False Statements to Procure Issuance of a Credit Card. Under this statute, it is illegal for a person to:
- Make or cause to be made, either directly or indirectly, any false statement in writing;
- The false statement must be made respecting his or her own identity or the identity of another person or of a firm or corporation;
- The person (defendant) must know that the false statement was false and must intend the false statement to be relied upon; and
- The person (defendant) must have made the false statement with the purpose of procuring the issuance of a credit card.
As a fourth degree crime, Making False Statements to Procure Issuance of a Credit Card carries up to eighteen (18) months in prison, if you are convicted. Moreover, a convicted person will face a fine of up to $10,000, as well as possible civil liability as well.
Use of a Credit Card Knowing it has Been Revoked, Forged or Expired in New Jersey
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(d)(1), it is a third degree crime to “Use a Credit Card Knowing it has Been Revoked, Forged or Expired”. For the State prosecutor to convict an person of this offense, they must demonstrate the following four (4) elements:
- That the defendant intended to defraud the issuer or a person providing money, goods, services or anything else of value;
- The credit card must be used for these purposes;
- The card which is used must be forged, expired or revoked; and
- The defendant must have knowledge of the forgery, expiration or revocation.
As a third degree crime, this offense can get you up to five (5) years in prison and a $15,000 fine, if convicted.
Fraud Committed By the Provider of Money, Goods or Services in New Jersey
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(e), it is a third or fourth degree crime for a person authorized to furnish money, goods and services to defraud a card issuer. There are two different offenses under this statute.
- The first type of offense, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(e)(1), occurs when the provider was aware that card was being used to commit a theft, that the card was forged, or that the card was expired. For the State to get a conviction under this offense, they need to prove the following four (4) elements:
- That the defendant is an individual authorized by an issuer or his agent to furnish money, goods, services or anything else of value;
- The defendant furnished money, goods, etc;
- The defendant did his with an intent to defraud either the issuer or the cardholder; and
- The accused, when he furnished the money, goods, etc. was fully aware that the card had been obtained or retained in violation of the theft prohibitions of the New Jersey Criminal Code or he knew that the card had been forged, expired or revoked.
As a crime of the third degree, you could be looking at up to five (5) years in prison and a fine upwards of $15,000, if convicted.
- The second type of offense, under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(e)(2), takes place when an individual falsely represented that he issued goods or services. This crime is a fourth degree offense, and the prosecution must prove the following three (3) elements to convict an individual under the statute:
- That the accused is a person authorized by the issuer to provide money, goods, services or anything else of value upon presentation of a credit card by the cardholder;
- The defendant represented in writing to the issuer that he has provided the money, goods, etc; and
- That the accused in fact failed to furnish the money, goods, services or anything of value.
As a fourth degree offense, a conviction will carry up to eighteen (18) months in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Receipt of Anything of Value As Result of Credit Card Fraud in New Jersey
In certain situations, a person who receives money, goods, services or anything of value, as a consequence of a credit card fraud, is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree. This statute, under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(g), targets the receiver of the benefits, instead of the user of the card. For the first kind of receiving offense, the State needs to prove the following three (3) material elements:
- That the accused received money, goods, services or anything else of value;
- The benefits were knowingly obtained based on credit card that was forged, expired or revoked, or based on the representation that the person uttering the card was the cardholder (but without his consent), or on the representation that the utterer was the cardholder when in fact the card had not been issued; and
- The receiver was aware or believed such a fraud had occurred.
A presumption of the requisite knowledge exists if the defendant obtained, at a discount, a ticket issued by an airline, railroad, steamship or other transportation company, and the ticket had been obtained by one of the specified fraudulent methods and the individual who received the benefits did not make a diligent inquiry that the individual from whom he received the ticket had a right to be holding that ticket. This presumption, in addition to all the other presumptions in this section, are not mandatory. The trier of the fact is at liberty to accept or reject the inference.
As a crime of the fourth degree, a conviction carries up to eighteen (18) months in prison and a fine up to $10,000.
Fraudulent Use of Credit Card in New Jersey
Finally, it is a third degree offense to Fraudulently Use a Credit Card. This offense targets the person who uses a counterfeit, fictitious, altered, forged, lost, stolen or fraudulently obtained credit card to gain access to money, goods, services or anything else of value. It must be demonstrated that the defendant acted knowingly. The crime is also directed at the individual who furnishes, acquires or uses any actual or fictitious credit card, whether alone or in tandem with names of credit cardholders, or other information pertaining to a credit card account in any form with unlawful or fraudulent intent.
As a third degree crime, this offense carries up to five (5) years in prison and a fine up to $15,000, if convicted.
Definitions Related to Credit Card Theft in New Jersey Law
The following terms contained in the theft statute are defined as follows:
Credit card – This term has been expanded to mean any tangible or intangible instrument or device issued with or without fee by an issuer that can be used, alone or in conjunction with another means of account access in obtaining money, goods, services or any other thing of value on credit including credit cards, credit plates, account numbers, or any other means of account access. The reason for this change was to expand the definition of credit card to include account numbers or other means of account access.
Expired credit card – a credit card which is no longer valid because the term shown either on it or on documentation provided to the cardholder by the issuer has elapsed.
Issuer – the business organization or financial institution which issues a credit card or its duly authorized agent.
Cardholder – the individual or organization named on the face of the credit card to whom or for whose benefit the card is issued by the issuer.
New Jersey Credit Card Fraud Attorneys
Spodek Law Group has over 100 years of combined experience on staff, including more than twenty-five years of prior prosecuting experience. Their experience gives our lawyers an inside view on how the State might attempt to prove their case against you. If you or a loved one has been charged with a criminal credit card theft, extortion, money laundering or theft of services offense, please reach out to our office for a free consultation. Our attorneys are available 24/7 to help you through this difficult process.