Bank Fraud Lawyer San Francisco, CA
As an experienced bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA can explain to you, bank fraud is defined under statute 18 U.S. Code § 1344: “Whoever knowingly executes, or attempts to execute, a scheme or artifice to defraud a financial institution; or to obtain any of the moneys, funds, credits, assets, securities, or other property owned by, or under the custody or control of, a financial institution, by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises” — and it’s nothing to mess around with — “shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both.”
Common types of bank fraud involve remotely created checks, card skimming, fraudulent demand drafts, check kiting, check forgery, fraudulent loan documentation, empty ATM deposits, and fraudulent wire transfers. If you have been accused of any of these, or any other type of bank fraud, you may be wondering just what kind of defense is possible.
A conscientious defense lawyer, such as those at the Morales Law Firm in California, will examine all the evidence pertaining to the case. However, if they conclude that the evidence is admissible and that it seems to support the prosecution’s case, that’s when it becomes interesting.
A bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA knows that in order to get a conviction on bank fraud charges, the prosecution has to prove that the defendant knowingly and intentionally committed fraud. Proving someone else’s state of mind is never easy, and there are several arguments that your lawyer may put forward.
The first might be arguing that you acted in good faith. This comes down to showing that you didn’t know that your actions were illegal. Factors in this defense include your age, education, and profession. If you are a bank manager with 25 years of experience, you’d be expected to know banking rules and regulations. However, there are plenty of people who have no reason to know the ins and outs of the banking system, and if you are one of them, you may be called up to explain this to the judge.
You may also be asked to explain that you had no intent to defraud the bank or its customers. If you can demonstrate that your actions were an honest mistake, this will make it easier for your lawyer to argue a lack of intent. Remember that proving intent is a crucial element of proving fraud.
Another argument that goes to your state of mind is whether you committed fraud under duress. This means that you were threatened with violence or another type of coercion, and you reasonably believed that you or someone else would be badly hurt if you did not go through with the fraud. You will not be held criminally liable if you committed bank fraud under duress.
3 Questions to Ask Your Bank Fraud Lawyer
When you are facing bank fraud charges against you, it’s understandable that you feel afraid, apprehensive and anxious to know what will happen next. When you talk to your bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA like those at The Morales Law Firm, your attorney will explain what will take place and how they can help. That said, you may have questions of your own that you are well within your rights to ask. In fact, your bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA expects you to ask as many questions as possible. Here are just a few example of what you can ask your attorney at The Morales Law Firm.
1. What Can I Argue to Help acquit Me of Bank Fraud
As your bank fraud attorney will tell you, there are a number of ways you can fight your bank fraud charges. Your legal representative from The Morales Law Firm can argue that you acted in good faith when you took the actions that resulted in your charge. This means that you didn’t know you were defrauding a bank.
Also, your bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA can say that you are unable to withstand trial for a compelling reason, or that you are ready to plead insanity. If you are wrongfully charged with bank fraud, The Morales Law Firm representative can argue your case with a thorough and factual timeline.
2. How Long Will My Sentence Be if I Am Found Guilty of Bank Fraud?
It is hard to say what your sentence may be if you are found guilty of bank fraud unless your attorney at The Morales Law Firm becomes familiar with the circumstances of your case, including the exact charge as well as the jurisdiction where you are due to be tried.
That said, if you work with a skilled bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, you have a good chance of your charges being dropped. If you do have to serve a sentence, your legal advocate at The Morales Law Firm can fight to greatly reduce your sentence or to get you placed on probation instead.
3. Should I Take a Plea In a Bank Fraud Case?
Your bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA will be happy to discuss the details of your case with you as thoroughly as possible. This should include a conversation about whether or not to take a plea if you are going to be found guilty of a bank fraud charge.
While it is impossible to know whether a plea deal is the right decision in all cases, your attorney at The Morales Law Firm will do everything to ensure that you are fairly represented and that you see the best outcome possible.
Do’s and Don’ts When You’ve Been Arrested for Bank Fraud
According to the Federal Trade Commission, there were 149,457 reports of bank and lender fraud in 2019. If you are unlucky enough to have been accused of bank fraud, you need a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA,such as The Morales Law Firm by your side to help you through the tricky legal system. Here are some do’s and don’ts to help you along the way.
Do Know Your Rights
The police can only ask you for basic information without reading you the Miranda warning. That information includes your name and address. They may read you your rights, but in the heat of the moment, you may not dear or understand them clearly. You have four basic rights under the law.
- The right to remain silent. You do not have to answer police questions. Anything you say to them could be used against you in court.
- The right to talk to an attorney for advice before you’re questioned. If you can’t afford one, a lawyer will be provided for you.
- The right to have a lawyer with you during questioning by the police. Your attorney can advise you on which questions you can answer and which you shouldn’t.
- The right to change your mind if you do start talking to the police. You’re allowed to stop talking at any time.
Do Be Polite and Calm at All Times
If you are arrested, a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, might advise you to always be polite and as calm as possible when dealing with the police. Add “yes, sir” and “no, sir” to anything you say. Use “please” and “thank you” when appropriate. Avoid insulting the officers, spitting at their feet or being belligerent.
Don’t Talk to the Police
Beyond intake questions like your name, age, date of birth, address etc., do not talk to the police. Don’t assert your innocence. Don’t try to explain the situation. Don’t say a word beyond “I’m exercising my right to remain silent and asking for an attorney.” Police are then required to stop interrogating you. If they continue, you may have legal grounds to pursue action against them. A bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, can help you determine if that is the case.
Don’t Try To Go It Alone
When you are arrested for bank fraud, you need a bank fraud layer such as The Morales Law Firm on your side. Bank fraud lawyers in San Francisco, CA can help you through all steps of your case, from arrest to interrogation, from bail hearings to your arraignment, and from your trial to any necessary appeals.
If you have been accused of bank fraud and you acknowledge that the prosecution’s evidence will be difficult to disprove, you need to reach out to a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA who has seen it all before. They will be able to talk with you about whether you actually intended to defraud the bank.
4 Ways a Bank Fraud Lawyer Can Help
Bank fraud isn’t a new type of crime, but the ways people are committing money-system crimes today are definitely new. Technology and money go hand in hand and with today’s leaps in technology, the financing and banking industry has become incredibly difficult to navigate. If someone has been charged with a crime or believes they may soon be charged with a crime, or if someone believes they have been the victim of a bank fraud crime, that person should probably speak with a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA. Here are a few ways a bank fraud lawyer might be able to step in and help.
1. Help Suing an Entity or Person Who Committed a Crime
Many people are falling victim to bank fraud in America. With the advent of the internet, apps, credit cards and social media, new criminals who prey on innocent people are forming every day. If someone believes they have been a victim of theft or an identity crime involving their bank account, that person should definitely consider hiring a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, like one from The Morales Law Firm.
2. Help Defending a Person Charged or Accused of a Crime
If someone has been contacted by a law enforcement agency regarding a bank fraud crime, or that person has received an official document in the mail asking them to appear in court or at a police station, that person is absolutely allowed to have the assistance of an attorney, even if they have not yet been charged for a crime. Hiring an attorney to help defend you is not an admission of guilt, it’s only an admission of awareness.
3. Help Stopping Incoming Mail and Phone Calls
If a person is receiving threatening letters, emails or phone calls, an attorney like one from The Morales Law Firm could be hired to step in. A bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, can assist with stopping a person’s incoming threat letters by sending the mailers or callers a letter demanding them to redirect their communication to the law firm directly.
4. Help Understanding Some Legal Documentation
There’s no better way to protect oneself or one’s company from bank fraud than by hiring a bank fraud lawyer in San Francisco, CA, to review documents. Sometimes the assistance of a knowledgeable legal professional is needed for interpreting or writing new documentation – just in case. Someone could easily make a mistake and unwittingly find themselves in a bank fraud dispute or some type of legal claim against them.