Loudoun County Identity Theft Lawyer
Identity theft is a serious crime in Loudoun County that involves stealing another person’s identity while specifically intending to harm them. Individuals and entities may steal a person’s identity by acquiring their birth date, social security number, or other pieces of personal identifying information. Most identity thefts occur for purposes of opening credit card accounts and lines of credit in the accuser’s name.
As you may imagine, the potential penalties for Loudoun County identity theft crimes are high. If you are facing a criminal charge for identity theft, a Loudoun County identity theft lawyer could fight for you. Contact a well-practiced fraud attorney to learn your rights and legal option.
Specific Intent Crime
In Loudoun County, identity theft is a specific intent crime. This means that the prosecutor must prove the accused did one or both of the following:
- Specifically intended to defraud or harm another person or business
- Specifically intended to distribute or sell the alleged victim’s identifying information to another person
An identity theft crime occurs in any location where the alleged victim resides or where the alleged offense occurs. This is true even if the accused is never physically present in this location at any time.
The prosecutor handling the identity theft case has the burden of proving the accused’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, which is a common sense legal standard. An identity theft attorney in Loudoun County may be able to determine whether the prosecutor has likely satisfied their burden of proof.
Felony Versus Misdemeanor Identity Theft Charges
Identity theft crimes could incur both misdemeanor and felony charges. This classification depends primarily upon the amount of money the accused allegedly stole. In Loudoun County, some identity thefts are Class One misdemeanors. It should be noted that if the financial loss to the accuser totals $500 or more, the prosecutor may charge the accused with a Class Six felony. Second and subsequent identity theft convictions are also Class Six felonies.
If the accused obtains, accesses, or records five or more individuals’ identifying information as part of the same transaction, a Class Five felony charge may result. In the event the accused steals 50 or more individuals’ identities as part of the same criminal transaction, the prosecutor can charge the accused with a Class Four felony. Given the seriousness of identity theft allegations in Loudoun County, accused individuals are recommended to contact a hard-working attorney immediately.
Restitution as a Penalty
The accused will likely face numerous penalties if a Loudoun County jury convicts the accused of identity theft. This may include possible jail time and monetary fines. With these penalties, a sentencing judge may order the accused to pay restitution to the accuser or the accuser’s estate if they are deceased.
As a knowledgeable attorney could explain, restitution in a Loudoun County identity theft case includes compensating the accuser for the expenses they incurred. Those expenses typically involve correcting errors or inaccuracies in credit reports and bank statements.
Talk to a Loudoun County Identity Theft Attorney
A conviction for a Loudoun County identity theft can be costly. With the penalties imposed upon conviction, your reputation in the community and in your profession may very well suffer damage.
A Loudoun County identity theft lawyer could zealously defend you at all court hearings and trials in your criminal case. An experienced lawyer may also be able to represent you at sentencing hearings, argue for a less-serious penalty on your behalf, and work toward minimizing the consequences of your identity theft conviction.